For over a year, we at www.hearingwisdom.com have been blogging about the dangers of untreated hearing loss and the high price of hearing aids. We are glad that the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology has come to the same conclusions. Here are some take-aways from this report:
1. Hearing loss is a substantial national problem.
“Age-related hearing loss affects many Americans, with older adults particularly at risk—a quarter of adults between 60 and 69 years, over half in the range 70-79 years, and almost 80 percent of those older than age 80 have difficulty hearing. The absolute number of those affected, already almost 30 million, is expected to grow as the population ages.”
“Untreated hearing loss is statistically associated with higher risks of social isolation; depression; dementia; falls with injury; and inability to work, travel, or be physically active.”
2. The market for hearing aids is characterized by their high cost.
“Cost is the largest barrier to hearing-technology adoption. A 2014 survey found that the average price of one hearing aid was $2,363… . Many, if not most, individuals need two hearing aids, one in each ear, doubling the cost.”
We will bring you more from this report in the days and weeks to come. You can read the complete report here. We are heartened that our complaint has finally been heard in the highest corridors of power.