While most audis do not want people purchasing hearing aids by mail order, many people do and are very satisfied with the service they receive. There was a big article in US News and World Report about a year ago about hearing aid purchases by mail order. Interesting reading. There are other forums that have positive things to say about mail order purchasing and the substantial savings, so it is not all negative though some would like to convince you of that. Certainly, it is not for everyone, and you have to make up your own mind, but not everyone needs their hand held by a local audi at a substantial increase in price.:rolleyes:
I have the exact same problem…I have 2 Pulse aids the cost a fortune but I can get them on eBay for $850.
internumb did you get the aids from eBay? And how do you like the Pulse now that you have had them awhile?
I would not buy a hearing aid off the internet unless the company offers home-based programming. For example, one company–America Hears–sends you the programming software/hardware to download changes from their home base.
I’ve gone through three sets of hearing aids so far and all have required numerous adjustments from my audiologist, including fine tuning in the office (making changes one step at a time until it sounds right to me) more than once. Having to mail the aids back and forth for every one of these adjustments would have driven me crazy. It was hard enough with a supportive professional sitting there encouraging me. In the end, though, I was satisified with the aids.
I suppose if might work out economically to buy mail order if you get the programming right in 2-3 tries.
Is there any source which compares these devices? I find the marketing brochure completely useless. Since I have no prior experience with these things… as this is my first time with aids… I am baffled by the multiplicity of choices. What are the advantages of each of these devices?
Are rechargeable batts better than replaceable?
What sort of maintenance for the components aside from the batts is required?
I use cable frame eye glasses because I don’t want them falling off. Do they interfere with the aids when taking them on and off as I do for work on the PC and general use?
I just got a pair of ReSound Pulses. I was charged 3,400 which seems like a like since a pain on ebay is 1700. Mentioned this to the Dr and he said programming them is 500 (a unit or a pair… not sure) so that it is hardly cheaper.
$500? He put in the results from a hearing test done by the referring audiologist into a computer program… put the divices in my ears as the PC programmed them (10 minutes?) then a short spiel about use and cleaning and so forth and another appointment in 3 weeks. Nice bedside manner, but I sense a rip off here.
I wore them and they do help my hearing, but I don’t know that it is work $3,400… and they ARE annoying to have those things in my ear canal. I suppose I might get used to them, but I unless I see some pretty dramatic results I am inclined to return them and get my money back.
I am going to test them in situation with backrground noise which I had difficulty in discrimation of conversation. But this is rare for me anyway… so again, it might not be worth the money.
How much does an audiologist charge to program a pair of Pulses?
I had a pair of these devices and wore them for 3 weeks. I don’t find it worth what they cost…ie the so called improvement in hearing. I found them uncomfortable and inconvenient.
I do have trouble hearing conversation in noising environments, and female voices, but I noticed no improvement in this area. I did have some improved hearing in the higher frequencies, but I can certainly live without this. I could hear the keys in my hand and the floor squeek and the dogs nails on the floor. TV was no better nor the movies nor conversations in noisy environments.
Went back to the audiologist to tell him that they were not for me and he convinced me to used them for 2 more weeks and then he would add more high end. I left his office with them in and went to a business meeting and when I returned one had fallen out. It is imply not worth $3,500.
Amazing… I didn’t even notice it when it fell off… notice the physical feeling nor the change in hearing… so the effect was pretty invisible or transparent. That would not happen with my glasses… ever. I can’t be so paranoid that the things will fall off and I wouldn’t even know it.
The doctor who tested me indicated that I had moderate sensorineural loss in both ears w/ moderate to severe loss above 3000 and recommended hearing aids.
I have decided to return the aids and not use any hearing assist. When I change my mind I will order from the internet because they are half the price… and look for someone to program them for a reasonable fee.
This was not a positive experience for several reasons.
From Gn Resound’s Own Web Site for “professionals”:
"GN Resound > For the Professional > Practice Services > ReSound Rewards >
The GN ReSound ReWards Program is the most flexible business partnership program in the hearing healthcare industry. ReWards is designed to show our appreciation for your loyalty and partnership while helping you grow your business. Your ReWards membership allows you to accumulate points for GN ReSound products you purchase. GN ReSound also offers bonus points when monthly totals exceed 1,000 points. In return, we ask for your commitment of purchasing an average of 5 net units per month over a period of 6 months.
The ReWards website allows you to track ReWards points and calculate point-to-dollar conversion for all ReWards incentive programs. Points can be redeemed for a number of different items and marketing services that are designed to help grow your business. Point redemption is easy - a phone call to your GN ReSound Inside Sales Representative initiates the redemption process.
Inside Sales can be reached at 1-800-248-4327"
If this isn’t an incentive to push these devices I don’t know what is. Clearly these audis are part of the marketing apparatus and it is hardly more than an Amway type operation or approaching the mentality of a pyramid marketing scheme.
These approaches may be legal but they are disgusting in my mind and exemplify what is wrong with the delivery of medical care in this country. It’s all about making big bucks!
I believe oticon offers interacoustic equipment, i know
starkey has a similar system internationally.
It seems is a comon thing now.
A good friend of mine from argentina had told me horror stories about this
Wake up and smell America! I recently referred a patient to her doctor to have her ear wax removed. A very simple procedure that can be carried out by a nurse with a syringe full of warm water, in less than 5 minutes. This patient ended up sitting in front of an Ear Nose and Throat specialist nurse, who charged $300 to remove the ear wax from her ear (one ear BTW).
If you want to talk about health care rip offs in America, go right ahead. Watch the movie Sicko, if you want to get really annoyed.
America spends somewhere in the order of $5,800 per capita on health care, yet has a system that leaves millions of Americans out in the cold. In many European countries they spend half that amount and cover everyone. These same countries have a longer life span and far lower infant mortality than America.
So let’s not try to pretend that the hearing aid industry is some great rip off merchant here. Frankly they are far less predatory than much of the medical profession.
At least my patients know the EXACT cost of treatment up front, with no hidden extras later. Next time you go to the Emergency Room try getting a quote for treatment up front, and see if they stick with it. Good luck with that.
As for what you posted about ReSound, they are basically just describing a rewards program that provides an incentive to remain loyal to the brand. Have you been to a doctor’s office lately? Who do you think supplies them with those fancy plasma TVs and other nice toys? Drug companies send in drug reps that bribe the doctors to push certain drugs over others. Doctors are not giving you the best medicine to cure you, they are giving you drugs based on a combination of bribes from the drug companies, and threats from the insurance companies.
Just because your experience with hearing aids is less than stellar hardly gives you reasonable grounds to try and uncover the industry as a complete scam, and liken it to a pyramid marketing scheme.
i think the statement that drs receive brives is not a good generalization.
However, I had work many years ago with a big pharma company and they do pamper the Drs in a big way… but i think one should be carefull when making generalizations