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Denis asked...

Can you get private hearing aids free on NHS when you pass 60?

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The Answer

The NHS supplies a range of hearing aids, but won’t usually offer quite the same range of choice as private providers. NHS hearing aids are all battery operated and can sit in the outer ear, behind the ear or in the ear canal. You certainly won’t be limited to the clunky, very obvious and unattractive models you may remember from your youth! Most NHS services have both digital and analogue hearing aids – the clinic can explain which kind would be most suitable for you, or you can find out more at http://www.deafnessresearch.org.uk/

If you go to a reputable private provider, you should always be offered a guarantee. This will usually be between 2 and 5 years, depending on the type of hearing aid you get. Private hearing aids aren’t cheap – the more modern ‘digital’ hearing aids can cost upwards of £350 each – but if you find them more comfortable than the NHS equivalent and are wearing them every day, that will add up to no more than 50p a day for a hearing aid that lasts 2 years. Many hearing aids last longer than this and reputable companies will include an aftercare programme in the cost, where you can have your hearing aid checked and, if necessary, reprogrammed as your hearing changes over time.

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