Saturday, May 3, 2008

Charity starts in the.... desert?

Something RLM said to me in another blog made me think. Some organizations/states/whatever cover the costs of CI and hearing aids while they don't cover the cost of equally useful tools for Deaf like Sidekicks, etc.

This brings up a much larger point, though. I read that the worldwide demand for CI is about $200 million. And if 1 of every 10 people in HoH in the US, then the bilateral cost of providing them all hearing aids is:

300,000,000 people
30,000,000 HoH
$2000 x 2 = $4000 for aids
assume aids last 4 years, so $1000 per person, per year.
so about $30 billion per year at absolute most, since many don't need bilateral, and most aids last longer than 4 years.

Now, that sounds like a large sum of money, until you consider the amount we have spent per year for our precious wars in Iraq and Afganistan (hint, lots more than $30 billion per year).

So instead of sitting here fighting about inequalities of coverage, why don't we all focus our sights on the wonderful people flushing away money for pork barrel wars that might be better spent taking care of our citizens and their health and life needs.

...and don't even get me started on earmarks and lobbyists...


Grendel said...

I don't know of any organizations that cover the costs of a CI, although I know of one that helps individuals advocate for their health insurance to cover part of the cost for those who want one and are paying out of pocket.

When we first tried hearing aids for my daughter, unsuccessfully, our hospital had a year-long loaner program, so we only had to pay a couple of hundred dollars for the ear molds and maintenance equipment, which was great, because little ones grow so fast, and we'd have had to go through multiple versions. I don't know if those loaner programs are in place for adults, or could be extended.

But that's just based on my own experience, you may know of situations where some part of the medical costs are paid by an organization or charity. Wish I'd known of those last year!

Li-Li's Mom

Valerie said...

My CI surgery and visits were paid by my own private insurance company. I had to fight a year to get them to pay for it. I also know about out of pocket cost - I'm paying each month for about the next year.

Wish I knew of some organization that would pay for it. but that is the benefit of working for a living.

Abbie said...

My cochlear implant was paid for by insurance as well. I know a couple of individuals that do not work nor qualify for government insurance like Medicaid. They are stuck in limbo and it is a shame.

As far as hearing aids go, you have Division of Vocational Rehabilitation and the Lions Club to help with hearing aids, providing you meet their income requirements. There are some organizations that will help with the cost of cochlear implants. One will provide the implant but will not cover the cost of surgery.