Followup - Humana's hearing aid prices

Jeffrey Sirianni audioman at HCTC.NET
Sun Sep 14 23:39:43 EST 1997


steve at accessone.com (Steve Hoffman) writes:

>>Humana Plans to Cut Its Hearing-Aid Prices

>>Wall Street Journal 9/3/97

>>The officials say they have told AHP providers to apply the $700
>>discount to their lowest price whether that be the price Humana
>>and AHP agreed to in their contract or the providers' in-store
>>price for non-Humana customers. Many of the hearing-aid centers
>>have kept two separate price lists for the same products one for
>>regular customers and a higher-priced version for Humana members.

>>"We have advised our provider and they agreed that the $700
>>allowance will always be applied to the lower" of the two prices,
>>says Pam Gadinsky, spokeswoman for Humana in Miramar. "We think
>>it's a minor alteration that needs to be made."

gandalf at aud.org <Michael> responds:

>Once in an HMO you are trapped with this kind of thing. I have not opted to 
>join an HMO, and after reading this scandalous story (not that the prices were 
>high, but that Humana could be so cavalier about a contract), I expect that I 
>will defer joining one. How anyone can charge a higher price to someone who 
>thinks they are getting a discount is beyond me. My prices may be high, or 
>they may be low. Nevertheless, all who purchase my services pay the same 
>price, except for Children's Specialty Services of the State, who allow me an 
>outlet for my urge to give something back, by serving little underprivileged 
>kids at a much reduced rate.

I once signed on with a medical supplement plan (via my credit card) that offered
discounts on eyeglasses.  When I went to the provider, I showed them my card and
they pulled out their price sheet for that plan.  Let's just say the discounted
price for my new glasses was $200, which was 40% off the suggested price.  On seeing
the "Sale" signs in the window, I asked the clerk that I would have paid without the
plan based on the sales price.  After 30 seconds or so on the calculator, she told
me that they would have been $210.  Needless to say I didn't sign up for another year
on that plan which ran me $40 a year.....

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