I say welcome to the newly, FDA approved OTCs if they…
- Encourage more people to accept the use of hearing aids
- Encourage those with hearing loss to seek help. On average Americans wait and live with progressive, degenerative hearing loss for 7-8 years before seeking help.
- Save us money and not become a useless expense. A poorly fitted hearing aid will not prevent the progressive, degenerative nature of a hearing disorder putting us at greater risk for dementia later in life (Livingston et al, 2020).
- Encourage Medicare coverage of hearing aids by doctors similar to private insurance coverage. Once OTCs are regarded as a “Band-Aid” for the larger issue of lack of Medicare coverage.
- Educate and maintain the public with realistic expectations of an OTC
- Do not over generalize to the medical, grade sound processors monitored by doctors of audiology. These two very different devices under the same umbrella of hearing aids, will work differently.
- If an OTC, did not work for you then an AuD prescribed device is needed.