Over the years, the correlation between healthy hearing and overall health and wellness has become undeniable, with numerous studies giving clear insight into the life-altering comorbidities of hearing loss. One in three adults, over the age of 65, suffers from Presbycusis, or age-related hearing loss.¹ As people age, their sensory abilities decline. Unlike acute medical conditions, the effects often begin minimally but can escalate as hearing impairments worsen. If left untreated, hearing loss can contribute to other adverse health outcomes ranging from increased stress to depression, impaired memory, falling, and even high blood pressure², which can dramatically increase Medicare program costs.
Medicare Advantage (MA) plans can’t afford to overlook the importance of offering a comprehensive and cost-effective hearing aid and hearing services solution. That’s because certain types of hearing impairments are treatable and preventable. Around 95% of people who have hearing loss could benefit from wearing hearing aids.³ The need for more affordable hearing care solutions coupled with a competitive health plan landscape has made it apparent that a hearing aid benefit should no longer be a health plan differentiator but rather table stakes. In fact, 88% of MA plans offer a hearing aid benefit to attract and retain enrollees.⁴
Dianne Cooper, AuD, MBA, Chief Experience Officer and Chief of Audiology
What to Look for in a Supplemental Benefits Vendor for a Comprehensive and Cost-Effective Hearing Aid and Hearing Services Solution
While some third-party hearing aid benefit administrators provide access to low-cost hearing aids, the majority don’t take advantage of the opportunity to advance health plans’ strategic goals. At NationsHearing®, we take a consultative approach when partnering with health plans to implement a hearing aid benefit that’s highly customized to their organization’s needs and membership.
Further, we work closely with health plans to offer an outcomes-based approach by providing their members with educational interventions, precisely when they are needed. In 2018, our Intervention Program, which examines the comorbidities of hearing loss, such as falling, cognitive impairment, depression, and medication adherence, was awarded a Certificate of Validation by the Validation Institute.
The data we submitted to the Institute was analyzed by objective experts in population health and statistics authenticating that our treatment program can reduce the rate of falling in a senior population and thus, decrease costs for fall-related hospitalizations. By combining cost-effective hearing aids and hearing service solutions with quality measure improvements, we’re able to help health plans drive growth, improve health outcomes, reduce costs, and increase member satisfaction.
In addition to our outcomes-based approach, our hearing aid benefit includes these member-centric service features:
- Cutting Edge Hearing Solutions Our innovative hearing technology encourages greater utilization and engagement by making it easy for members to access their hearing aid benefit and hearing care services.
- Cost-Effective Hearing Health Care We can offer competitive pricing due to our strategic relationships with leading hearing aid manufacturers, saving members thousands of dollars in out-of-pocket costs.
- Exceptional Service Delivery We go above and beyond expectations to ensure we deliver an outstanding member experience by providing best-in-class service.
- Enhanced Member Satisfaction We help move the needle on HEDIS®, CAHPS®, HOS, member retention, net promoter scores, and overall Star Rating scores by building a roadmap for engaging members where they are—on their terms.
To learn more about partnering with NationsHearing® to offer a hearing aid benefit that drives quality measure improvements, contact us at 877-439-1564 or visit NationsBenefits.com/NationsHearing.
Source:1 Johns Hopkins Medicine2 National Institute on Aging3 The Better Hearing Institute4 Medicare Advantage 2021 Spotlight: First Look.
Dianne Cooper, AuD, MBA
Chief Experience Officer and Chief of Audiology
With over 30 years of experience in the hearing industry, Dianne Cooper has a lifelong passion for helping individuals with hearing loss. As a Clinical Audiologist, she helped thousands of patients resolve communication problems and consequently improve their quality of life. She joined the company because of her desire to improve access to affordable hearing healthcare for the millions of Americans who suffer from hearing loss.
Dianne currently serves as Chief Experience Officer and Chief of Audiology. In this role, Dianne oversees day-to-day operations to support key departments at NationsBenefits. Her focus is strategic planning and goal-setting and directs the operations of the company in support of its goals.