A lot of Americans who need hearing aids do not always get them because they can be so expensive, but now they’re over the counter.
Americans can start purchasing hearing aids over the counter this week, after previously having to pay as much as $6,000.
President Joe Biden recently signed an executive order that would encourage the FDA to sell over the counter hearing aids without a prescription, according to WENY News. This announcement was made in August.
Over the counter hearing aids are a big move
It is estimated that 90% of the population that suffers from hearing loss will benefit from this move.
Around 16% of people with hearing loss actually use a hearing aid due to the costs.
The number of people suffering from some sort of hearing loss is larger than many realize. One out of every eight people over the age of 12 has hearing loss in both of their ears. The rate rises the older the population gets. By age 75, 50% of the population has hearing loss.
A 2020 study showed that people pay upwards of $4,000 for hearings for both ears. Larger retailers can offer them low as $1,400, and others charge as much as $6,000.
While there are only five companies that provide hearing aids, the fact that they are over the counter allows other companies to enter the market.
This could drastically lower the cost of hearing aids, selling them at places like Walgreens, CVS, Walmart, or even Best Buy. Some models are priced as low as $200 for a set.
Sony, Bose, and Best Buy are all creating new models, some with Bluetooth built in.
The move also makes it so places like Samsung, Google, and Apple can create models.
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