9/19 someone posted that buyers of Hearing Aids should shop around for the most experienced dispensers (w/ honesty and Integrity), best policies, best products, and best price. I absolutely agree!
I am an employee of an audiology practice. I can only speak for one firm but our perspective is completely different from the article. The whole practice is built on a long term perspective. Almost 100% of the business is built on repeat business, doctor referrals, and referrals from friends. After the sale everything possible is done for the patient and at no charge unless we have to pay the manufacturer. We want the next sale and the opportunity to sell their friends.
Whether hearing aids are increasing or decreasing in price depends on perspective. The price of a pair of top-of-the line hearing aids is more expensive than it was a few years ago. This is not the same hearing aid. What was the top-of-the-line hearing aid 5 or 6 years ago is now half the price it was then and it still as good as it was then. Hearing aid manufacturers do make good money because there are a limited number and producing a really good product is challenging. The audiologists who get their referrals by doing a good job make a living. The big hearing aid firms that advertise lose money. In our area there are 12 firms and we try to be equal to the lowest price in the area and sell people on the fact that we are the best. There are no specials and no pressure to decide now. Patients are encouraged to go home and talk it over with family and friends before deciding and they should.
By law the buyer can return a hearing aid for 30 days and get 100% of their money back.
There IS a tendency for audiologists to believe that hearing aids can help the hard-of-hearing enjoy a better life. If they didn't believe that they would be in a different business.