Why purchasing a hearing aid is a consumer nightmare
keskritt at SPRYNET.COM
keskritt at SPRYNET.COM
Tue Sep 23 20:38:38 EST 1997
I have been following this thread for a while, but the last response from
jbell at barint.on.ca has made me unable to sit back and just follow along...
In the posting, this individual has written:
"Here in Ontario the dispensing profession does operate as a professional group
with published flat rate fees for each level of service which are posted in each
office. I think this came about due to all the consumer rip offs in the past
which forced the government to take some action..."
I would just like to clarify this...
Here in Ontario, this published flat rate price schedule that is referred to
only applies to dispensers who are members of AHIP. Basically, the only
involvement the government has in this has to do with the fact that all
dispensers in Ontario must belong to AHIP in order to dispense hearing aids that
are partially funded through the Ministry of Health's Assistive Devices Program.
The dispensers are not truly regulated by any professional organization, but
must belong to AHIP if they want to dispense ADP-funded hearing aids, which
accounts for the vast majority of hearing aids dispensed in this province.
Audiologists, on the other hand, must have registration with the College of
Audiologists and Speech Language Pathologists of Ontario (CASLPO) in order to
legally practice in this province. CASLPO is the governing body for
Audiologists, and mandatory registration with the College is legislated by our
government. However, our professional groups (i.e., OSLA) publish recommended
fee schedules as well. Audiologists may authorize hearing aids for the ADP
program, and may also dispense ADP hearing aids if also given dispensing
audiologist status. However, the ADP program is run independent of any CASLPO
involvement...that is, you can be registered with CASLPO and practice as an
Audiologist, but may or may not be an authorizer/dispenser for ADP (although
The reason Widex Senso's and other hearing aids are priced differently here in
Ontario has to do with whether or not the device is funded by the ADP program.
If it is, and the Widex Senso falls in this category, then the government
stipulates that the dispensing fee for that device must not exceed the published
fee schedules of either AHIP (for dispensers) or OSLA (for dispensing
audiologists). So, that is why the SENSO costs less in Ontario...because it is
partially funded through the Ministry of Health's ADP program. Not because the
individuals here are any more or less ethical than our American counterparts.
Just so you don't think the Canucks are any more righteous, eh?
K. A. Eskritt, M.Cl.Sc., Reg CASLPO
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