Is my audiologist scamming me?

Hi. I could really use some help. I have to use an audiologist assisgned to me by my insurance. She is charging me $7000.00 for the Resound Linx 7. Without going into a lot of detail, there are several things that make me question her ethics but, ultimately, i want to know if she is charging me a fair or high price for these hearing aids. I have searched everywhere for a price for these hearing aids and I can’t seem to find a published price for them. Does anyone have any idea about how much I should be paying for these?

I wish I could tell you. Someone else will have to reply about the cost. I just recently got a pair of Widex Unique Fusion 330s and the two cost me $6,200. The top 440s were $7,100. My insurance would not cover any part of it. You’re somewhat lucky. Curious as to why you’re replacing your Widex aids.

Thank you so much for the response! I am only replacing my Widex because I finally have an insurance policy that will cover hearing aids and I figured I might as well get some while I have the insurance. I actually LOVE my Widex. They changed my life. They sound amazing. The only thing I don’t like about them is that I’m always taking them out to answer the phone and put my headphones in, etc. I worry about losing them. If Widex would connect to my IPhone, I would jump for joy but Resound is the only one that connects to the IPhone. It’s a great feature and I love that about the Resound. I just wish they sounded as good as my Widex.

I do feel very lucky that my insurance is paying for this new pair - or at least paying a huge chunk. I know most states don’t have hearing aid coverage but CA now does. I appreciate the information on what you paid for yours. Maybe they are not charging too much more than they should. Thank you again so much for the response!

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If you wanted to stay with a Widex device you could perhaps look at the ‘Call-Dex’ option? It is very small and works well with Iphone - Basically, it needs a battery change once a week and stays permanently plugged into your Iphone headphone jack - wirelessly transmits the phone signal into both of the aids when you hold the phone up to the ear so you don’t need to take them out.

Likely, you just need to have further adjustments done for your new aids to sound as good as your older Widex do now. It took 3 adjustments for mine and each time was an improvement.

Of course they are scamming you, you have insurance. All healthcare providers do that to get the most money out of your pocket. I bet your policy is something like 80/20 where you pay 20% of the list price. 20% of $7000 is $1400 out of your pocket. But here is the game, or catch you are not being told. Your Insurance carrier has a flat negotiated contract price with the Audiologist. You may think the Insurance company is paying 80%, but they are not paying the difference of $5600. More likely half that. If you were paying cash out of your pocket, your HA could be more like $4000 to $4500. So they jack the price way up to get more cash out of you.

When you get your Explanation of Benefits, you will see what I am talking about. You will see your deductible of say 20% of List price say $1400, Insurances was billed $5600, but only paid $2800 and your liability balance is ZERO. That is how healthcare works when you have Insurance. Cash patients pay considerably less.

If you think that is bad, Prescription Meds is a huge ripoff of the public in the USA. My Brother lives in Panama, moved there about 2 years ago from the USA. His chronic meds in the USA cost him $280 for 90 day supply with Insurance. His copay was the $280. In Panama, he has no prescription Insurance, just medical. The exact same chronic medicine cost him $38 for 90 days at the local pharmacy.

The LiNX2 7 has a wholesale price of about $1100/ea. It’s up to you to decide if your audiologist’s professional services are worth the markup that she’s charging.

If what Dereckbc is saying is true you need to check with your insurance company and ask what amount you should be paying if they are in fact under contract with your Audiologist’s firm. Your cost should be part of that contract agreement as with all medial that require a certain percentage of costs on your part.

Still, I haven’t heard anyone say if the LINX2 7 is a “top of the line” hearing aid. 7K is a premium price for anything less than a premium product. Also, you need to post your audiogram in your signature block to show with all your future messages. There are professionals on this forum who can give sound recommendations of makes and models based on your specific hearing loss.

The premium aid is the Linx2 9 not Linx 7 which would be previous generation and a step down from the premium.

If you have any questions regarding her ethics, honesty, integrity, etc. its time to look elsewhere. Perhaps a call into your insurance is needed to find out what they are going to actually pay and let them know what you are being charged. If the cost of the HA’s is $1,100ea as rasmus has said and double the price you should be paying around $4,500 for the Linx7’s. Since you are being charged quite a bit more than that I would say your audi is guilty of committing insurance fraud, however, in the medical world insurance fraud is a wink and a nod infraction and goes on all the time. Several years ago I was taken to the hospital by ambulance and I had to pay $300 and what they billed the insurance carrier(Kaiser) was totally ridiculous with so many services that they said they provided and never really did such as morphine, a saline IV and oxygen(didn’t get any of them until I was in the emergency room), the only thing they actually did was check my blood Oxygen level with the finger sensor and they charged $75 for putting it on my finger! When I told Kaiser they were being ripped off they didn’t seem to concerned and told me it happens all the time. This is pretty much how insurance works and we all pay for it in the end.

Since you are a Widex user and are used to their sound I hope you are able to adjust to the Linx 7 HA. Perhaps you should see if their is someone the insurance co. can recommend and provide coverage that sells Widex HA’s.

They lied then! What about the $7,000 ?

Well, the KS6 at Costco is about the same aid and is selling for $1800. A typical clinic sells their premium aids for around $6200.

When dealing with an HIS from Connect Hearing on a pair of of V90’s, I was told that they retailed for $10,200.00… She said they had a special going where I could get them for $6,400.00. I asked her if they price matched and I also showed her where people from this site were getting them for $3,000.00. In the end I did get them for 3K. This all took place back in 9/20/2016.

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When dealing with an HIS from Connect Hearing on a pair of of V90’s, I was told that they retailed for $10,200.00… She said they had a special going where I could get them for $6,400.00. I asked her if they price matched and I also showed her where people from this site were getting them for $3,000.00. In the end I did get them for 3K. This all took place back in 9/20/2016.

I would have run out of the place as fast as I could and never shown up again notifying any and everyone of this scam.

I can see your point, Ed. However, Connect price matches. That put the negotiation in the buyer’s hands and that’s really a good thing. Sadly, the overall business plan for the industry makes that a benefit rather than a scam. The industry overall does not compete on price. If any should be irate, it is the clinics that have to compete against a company owned location that has a whole different cost structure. It is quite possible that Silvantros’ profit exceeded, say, JustinHIS profit where he would have sold the aids for the higher price.

I do not see a bright future for the legit small scale audis to have to deal with Costco and internet. If a company is telling me that the actual price is $10,200 and is going down almost a three quarters of the price to price match there must be some problem. With testing and multiple follow ups dealing with insurance co. it must be difficult but do not tell me the price is 10.2 when you can sell it at 3.

Connect Hearing is manufacturer-owned (by Phonak), so they can discount the cost of goods. An independent practitioner has to pay about $3K for a pair of premium-level hearing aids.

thanks I did not have that piece of knowledge

Everything is negotiable. If you don’t believe this, let your Audi know that you’re going to shop her price. Insurance or not. I’m sure there are more local offices fitting GN Resound.

It might be the retail price in Australia, where the poor australians are hosed on HA’s. but in the U.S. it’s probably about $6,400. My answer would of been prove it and then told her I think I will shop around and find someone who is ethical. Check your date I think you meant 9/20/2015 since 9/20/2016 his months away.