Are hearing aids free for pensioners?

Zoom sobre un audióloga mostrando un audífono

As we gracefully age, maintaining good health becomes a priority, and addressing hearing issues is no exception. For Australian pensioners, the concern often turns towards the financial aspects of acquiring hearing aids. In this guide, we'll explore the various options available, the costs involved, and the government programs designed to assist pensioners in obtaining the auditory support they need.

The Hearing Services Program

With the rising need for auditory support, the Australian Government introduced the Hearing Services Program in 1997. Managed by the Office of Hearing Services, this program aims to alleviate the impact of avoidable hearing loss among both pensioners and veterans of the Australian Defence Force.

Which hearing aids are free for pensioners?

Under the Hearing Services Program, eligible individuals can access a range of benefits, including free hearing tests provided by accredited audiology providers. The program covers:

  • fully or partially subsidised government hearing aids
  • and assistive listening devices to enhance auditory experiences.

Which are hearing aids prices for pensioners?

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The prices of hearing aids for pensioners in Australia can vary based on several factors, including the type of hearing aid, its features, and whether it is fully or partially subsidised under the government's Hearing Services Program.

For eligible pensioners, the Hearing Services Program offers fully subsidised hearing aids, meaning that these devices are provided at no cost to the individual.

The program also allows pensioners the option to choose partially subsidised hearing aids if they prefer specific features or lifestyle benefits not covered by the fully subsidised options. Additionally, the annual maintenance agreement under the program covers essential services like battery supply and device repairs, further supporting pensioners in maintaining their hearing aids. It's recommended to consult with accredited providers under the Hearing Services Program for detailed information on specific hearing aid prices and options available for pensioners.

What does the Hearing Services Program cover?

Fully subsidised hearing aids

Upon confirmation of the need for a hearing aid following your complimentary hearing test, you gain access to a diverse selection of fully subsidised hearing devices. These aids, provided at no expense under the government-funded service, boast an array of features aimed at mitigating the impact of your hearing loss.

Partially subsidised hearing aids

Should you prefer a specific hearing aid for its unique features or lifestyle benefits not covered by fully subsidised options, you have the choice to partially subsidise it. In such instances, the Hearing Services Program contributes an amount equivalent to a fully subsidised hearing aid, and you cover the additional cost, known as the "gap," enabling you to acquire the device of your preference.

Assistive listening devices (ALDs)

For individuals averse to wearing hearing aids, there exists a variety of fully subsidised ALDs. These devices enhance television, radio, or telephone listening, as well as facilitate clearer one-on-one conversations. We can assist you in determining if an ALD aligns with your preferences during your hearing test.

Hearing aids maintenance (batteries & repairs)

The servicing, repairs, and provision of hearing aid batteries for your fully subsidised hearing devices are encompassed by the Hearing Services Program. It's essential to note, however, that a partially subsidised device may incur an annual maintenance fee covering servicing, repairs, and batteries.
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Who is eligible for the Hearing Services Program?

Determining eligibility is vital for accessing program benefits. Australian citizens or permanent residents can qualify if they fall into categories such as:

  • Pensioner Concession Card holders
  • Department of Veterans' Affairs Gold or White Card holders
  • Dependents of eligible individuals
  • Members of the Australian Defence Force, or those referred by the Disability Employment Services Program

How to apply to the Hearing Services Program

Applying for the program is a straightforward process. Eligible individuals can initiate their application by contacting providers, such as EarPros, either online or through in-person visits.

Subsidised hearing aids: are they good?

Fully subsidised hearing aids offered through the program undergo rigorous testing, meeting high Australian Standards. While they may not include premium features, they provide effective solutions for everyday listening situations.

How often can pensioners get free hearing aids?

Pensioners can access free hearing aids through the program once every five years. This cycle ensures individuals can adapt to evolving technology and address changing hearing needs.
Doctor inserting a hearing aid into a patient's ear
How much is the government hearing aid subsidy?

Discover how much is the Australian government subsidy for hearing aids and devices.

Australian subsidy for HAs

Hearing aids for DVA

Department of Veterans' Affairs (DVA) beneficiaries can access specific programs tailored to their needs, covering a range of services, including hearing aids.

To qualify for hearing aids through the DVA, individuals must hold a DVA Gold or White Card with hearing-specific conditions. This includes veterans experiencing hearing loss related to their military service.

Pensioner hearing aid replacement

The program allows for the replacement of faulty or obsolete hearing aids, ensuring consistent auditory support for pensioners.

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FAQs about hearing aids for pensioners

Is there an allowance for pensioners' hearing aids

The Pensioner Hearing Aid allowance in Australia is facilitated through the Australian Government Hearing Services Program (HSP). This program has two components, each with distinct eligibility criteria. Australian pensioners are eligible for free or subsidized hearing services under the HSP, providing ongoing support and subsidies on essential hearing products and services. The program aims to enhance accessibility to hearing aids for eligible individuals, including pensioners and veterans. While there may be a waiting period, typically five years, before pensioners can acquire new hearing aids, there are avenues to expedite this process. Amplifon is one of the providers assisting eligible individuals in accessing free or subsidized hearing services and devices through the HSP.

Are hearing aid batteries for pensioners free?

Hearing aid batteries for pensioners are covered under the annual maintenance agreement of the Hearing Services Program. This agreement typically includes the supply of batteries and device repairs for fully subsidised hearing devices provided to eligible pensioners. However, it's crucial to note that a partially subsidised device may attract an annual maintenance fee for servicing, repairs, and batteries.

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