What is the cost of untreated hearing loss?

Recently Professor of Economics, Robert J Brent did a cost benefit analysis of hearing aids INCLUDING the benefits of the reduced risk of dementia. Have a read of what his study found:

  • On a global scale the annual cost of unaddressed hearing loss is between $750 - $790 billion…
  • $105 Billion due to loss of productivity.
  • $573 Billion in the social costs including social isolation, communication difficulties and stigma. …
  • $67 - $107 Billion cost to the Health-Care sector.
  • Yet the rates of hearing aid use in America remain less that 25%.
  • The study showed a $276,916 (around $AUD 408,000) increase in direct benefits to a person wearing hearing aids. Which equates to a more than $30 to $1 payoff on average in treating your hearing loss according to the researchers.

Andrew Campbell of NeuAudio referencing this https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/00036846.2018.1564123

Original LinkedIn post here:

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How can several of those numbers even be quantified? Economists. hmph. smoke and mirrors.
So is this some kind of rationalization for the high price of hearing aids?
Or an argument that maybe they should be provided at no extra cost to the user?

I have been wearing hearing aids for 15 years. 11 of those years I would have been unemployable without hearing aids. And also those 11 years I earned more per year than I had earned in 4 years without the aids. So yes there is a huge cost for not taking care of your hearing needs. There is the cost to your mental and physical health.
There have been times that my aids were being repaired and my production would be very poor and my mental health would be also very poor. So yes there is a very large cost for not hearing the best you can. And no aids will never give normal hearing. But I also beg the question what is normal?


Data like this is typically used to encourage govt subsidies or complete coverage by the state.


I must be an exception. My hearing loss hasn’t caused me much trouble and hasn’t cost any lost production either. That is probably why I am a difficult one to fit. I have seen almost no benefit so far. I hope that changes.

I will say this after getting hearing aids my income doubled. I was able to communicate in meets so much better, and I was able to better understand on the phones. I was also able to get new jobs doing what I really wanted to do. And I was able to set in classrooms and really learn and do so much better on the certification test.

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Old thread but interesting.

That’s a huge question.

From an individual standpoint, it could well be the difference of having a job or not that equates to big money. This same person without a job due to hearing loss becomes a burden on the government system as handicapped.

As a large group of people having hearing loss without a job it now has an effect on taxation. This jobless person is not part of the money system. Instead of paying taxes he/she is needing government support. I do know my income taxes would easily buy a few pairs of aids annually.

I wonder how many people in let’s say the United States have lost their job or are doing menial work due to hearing loss? I do know at the tail end of my career my hearing was seriously effecting my work.

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Great share, Abram! People with hearing loss need to re-examine their need of a hearing aid. Poor hearing can be problematic in many ways, not just because they create hurdles in your day-to-day work, but also because it can be dangerous, like getting in an accident because you didn’t hear the sound of the passing vehicle. I know this is an extreme example, but believe me, I have many clients coming to my clinic who tell such stories about themselves and how they got in trouble because they simply couldn’t identify the object by its sound. I mean, it’s really sad that people with hearing problems are facing these troubles when they can easily avoid them with a simple hearing aid.

Why do so many people avoid getting hearing aids? Cost and perceived stigma? If something could be done about the cost, I think a lot more people would deal with the stigma themselves. A stigma is bad enough without having to pay an arm and a leg for the privilege of having it.

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