High Markups on Hearing Aids

High Markups on Hearing Aids

Dear Hearing Loss Web,

You recently had a very informative piece on all of the very technical info about hearing aids. However, at the beginning of the essay, the author said to forget about all the very high pricing of hearing aids. Surely he does not intend for us to do so!

The normal, “average” pricing from wholesale to retail <in most industries other than hearing aids – ed.> is double the cost. For example, an item costing the retailer $100 would be marked up to $200. In the supermarket industry, the profit margins are paper-thin, perhaps only a few cents.

In the hearing aid industry the mark-up is TEN TIMES the cost. What cost $100 will be sold retail for $1,000! And this often does NOT include other fees, nonrefundable.

I am absolutely unable to view such price gouging benignly. It is an unfair, immoral practice, made all the more so because most of us have no insurance that covers hearing aids.

Price gouging by the pharmaceutical industry (which forces only consumers in the US to fund their Research and Development budget) is a national disgrace. All of our medicines can be had much more cheaply in other countries: Canada, Mexico, Europe, etc. This only continues because of the lobbying done in Congress by the drug companies. It is all about money (I call it graft.) Congress has sold out the people whom it represents. Both major parties are to blame.

The hearing aid industry is second only to the drug industry in its egregious pricing practices.

Something must be done! Perhaps we should form a new organization to combat these awful practices. Where do your representatives fall on this issue?

Yours very sincerely,

Brenda D. Shanley