Dear Annie: Help for the hard of hearing when health insurance fails them

Dear Annie: I would like to reply to “An Aging Adult Facing Reality.” I, too, have profound hearing loss and have been wearing hearing aids since the age of 10. Since receiving my first set of hearing aids, the advancements in technology have been staggering.

My main frustration with hearing aids these days is that medical insurance rarely covers any of the costs associated with purchasing them. Insurance companies consider hearing aids to be a “personal choice” rather than a “quality of life choice,” unfortunately.

Hearing aids are just as essential to quality of life as eyeglasses, braces, dentures, canes and so forth. Due to the lack of financial assistance on behalf of medical insurance, I would like to tell you of some organizations that help to offset the costs of purchasing hearing aids. It is my sincere hope that this information may help someone who is struggling to hear, who needs to purchase hearing aids and does not think they can afford them.

There are various Medicare Advantage Plans, and the AARP does offer some assistance toward the cost of purchasing a hearing aid. Unfortunately, you must be a member in order to have access to the financial help. If you do not qualify for either of those programs, please look into the following agencies and organizations for financial assistance toward purchasing hearing aids:

No. 1: The Starkey Hearing Foundation (Hear Now Program)

Toll-Free Voice: (800) 328-8602

Email: [email protected]

Web Address:

No. 2: Lions Club International


Email: [email protected]

No. 3: Foundation For Sight & Sound


Email: [email protected]

No. 4: National Hearing Aid Project


No. 5: Office of Vocational Rehabilitation

Varies by state/Work History

No. 6: Hearing Loss Association of America


Individuals can access resources for their state.

Lastly, I encourage your readers to take some time to do research on the state in which they live. Many agencies offer state and federal grants that may offset a large portion, or cover all of the cost toward purchasing new hearing aids and other hearing assistance devices. States have their own agencies that offer grants, so by taking a little time to do a search online, you will find it well worth the effort. I hope this helps your readers in some small way. — Deaf and Proud

Dear Deaf and Proud: Thank you for these helpful resources.

Dear Annie: I had a terrible marriage and acrimonious divorce. My husband was so angry and vindictive that he lost custody of the kids. Obviously, I’d like my next love to be better. When I date and men ask, I tell them that I’m happy to briefly discuss why I divorced, but that I like to live my life forward. The best revenge is to live happily-ever-after. — Planning a Happy Future.

Dear Happy Future: The front windshield is a lot larger than the rearview mirror, and when we realize that, we are a lot happier in life. Onward and forward.

“How Can I Forgive My Cheating Partner?” is out now! Annie Lane’s second anthology — featuring favorite columns on marriage, infidelity, communication and reconciliation — is available as a paperback and e-book. Visit for more information. Send your questions for Annie Lane to [email protected].


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