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What Does Medicare Not Cover: Hearing Out-of-Pocket Costs

Medicare Bob
Medicare General Info
Under Original Medicare, hearing aids and exams to fit them aren’t covered, so out-of-pocket costs can add up to thousands.
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Original Medicare — Part A and Part B — covers a vast amount of services, but there are still certain areas it can’t cover. While there is some Medicare coverage for audiology services and hearing loss, gaps in coverage can cause some steep out-of-pocket costs.

A KFF.org study showed that while 65% of Medicare beneficiaries said they have hearing difficulties, only 14% of them actually use a hearing aid. Even fewer — 8% — reported using hearing services within the past year. And whereas half of the beneficiaries who used hearing services spent less than $60 out of pocket, the top 10% actually spent $3,600 or more out of pocket.

This could be due to the high cost of hearing aids. Let’s talk about what out-of-pocket hearing costs you might encounter.

What Hearing Services Are Excluded From Medicare Coverage?

On average, a pair of hearing aids can cost about $4,000. Unfortunately, Medicare does not cover hearing aids.

So, with Original Medicare, you’ll pay 100% of the cost for:

  • Hearing aids

  • Any exams you may need to get fitted for hearing aids

Are There Any Exceptions to Medicare’s Hearing Coverage?

Medicare may cover a hearing and balance exam if your doctor orders it. Medicare Part B could cover this exam should your doctor suspect you need further medical treatment.

Medicare Advantage plans, Medicaid or insurance through a private plan may help you offset any out-of-pocket hearing costs.

If you need more details about your hearing coverage as a Medicare beneficiary, call Senior Healthcare Direct at 1-833-463-3262, TTY 711 to speak to a licensed agent.

For more information on common Medicare out-of-pocket costs, check out the rest of the blogs in our “What Does Medicare NOT Cover?” series:

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LEGAL DISCLAIMER: The above is meant to be strictly educational and not intended to provide medical advice or solicit the sales of an insurance product or service of any kind.

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