In the ever-evolving world of hearing health, it’s essential to stay up to date with the latest offerings and options available. Recently, HearUSA, a prominent hearing retailer owned by audiology giant WS Audiology, unveiled a fresh rebrand and introduced new concept stores aimed at making hearing health more accessible.
Intrigued by these developments, I decided to delve deeper into HearUSA’s history, process, prices, and pros and cons.
In this review, I will share my findings and provide an overview of my experience with HearUSA’s hearing aids.
Table of Contents
History and Reputation
Founded in 1987, HearUSA has played a significant role in bringing hearing health to retail settings in the United States. The brand steadily grew its reputation and footprint until encountering financial challenges in the early 2010s.
Subsequently, it was acquired by Sivantos, a hearing health giant that later merged with another company to form WS Audiology.
Over the past decade, WS Audiology has worked to enhance the HearUSA brand and its offerings. Today, HearUSA is headquartered in Florida and operates more than 360 hearing centers across the nation, with over 4,000 employees.
Process and Unique Features
When it comes to the process of acquiring hearing aids at HearUSA, it follows a similar path to other hearing retailers but with a few distinct features. To initiate the process, you can use the HearUSA website to find a nearby location and then either call the clinic or book an appointment online. Notably, HearUSA also provides remote fittings and services for patients who are unable to visit a clinic in person, although the availability of remote services may vary depending on your state.
At your appointment, the HearUSA team will conduct a comprehensive hearing test to determine your specific hearing needs. This evaluation will inform the selection of hearing aids and their programming. While HearUSA offers a simple online hearing screener, most tests are conducted in their clinics.
One standout aspect of HearUSA is its commitment to in-clinic try-ons. Unlike many audiologists who may not offer patients the opportunity to try multiple products, HearUSA allows every patient to explore different styles and technology levels. This enables you to consider factors such as aesthetics, comfort, and sound quality.
Another advantage of choosing HearUSA is their expedited service called “Test, Advise, Fit and Go.” While other providers typically schedule separate appointments for testing, product ordering, and fitting, HearUSA streamlines the process so that you can leave with your hearing aids on the same day. Furthermore, HearUSA provides a 30-day return policy for all their products.
Price and Insurance Coverage
While HearUSA does not publicly disclose their hearing aid prices, some online research led me to a page displaying “sample savings,” which may provide an indication of local pricing. The prices listed on the HearUSA page are for single hearing aids, but I have converted them into pairs below:
- Basic Digital Hearing Aids: $2,538
- Value Digital Hearing Aids: $3,150
- Mid Level Digital Hearing Aids: $3,886
- Advanced Digital Hearing Aids: $5,600
- Premium Digital Hearing Aids: $8,400
It’s worth noting that the national average cost for a pair of hearing aids across all retailers is approximately $4,500. While HearUSA’s prices may not be the lowest in the market, they do offer comprehensive insurance benefit support to help offset the cost of their services. Currently, HearUSA partners with more health insurance plans than any other hearing care provider, and their hearing center teams are dedicated to assisting with the insurance process.
Hearing Aid Brands and Future Offerings
As an affiliate of WS Audiology, HearUSA primarily focuses on offering WSA products, namely Signia and Widex. If you have a preference for brands like Phonak, Starkey, ReSound, or Oticon, you may need to explore other retailers. Widex is renowned for its fast sound processing, superior sound quality, and popularity among music enthusiasts. On the other hand, Signia excels in rechargeable products and offers two innovative in-the-ear styles.
In addition to their existing lineup, HearUSA has plans to introduce Over-the-Counter (OTC) products from Sony starting in 2023. This move addresses the concerns of customers who worry about the lack of customer service available with OTC hearing aids. HearUSA aims to provide a hybrid solution that combines local care with more affordable OTC pricing.
Moreover, HearUSA’s collaboration with major hearing aid manufacturers ensures they can handle upgrades and servicing for most brands over time. As a result, you can expect HearUSA to offer options to upgrade to one of their house brands.
New Concept Stores and Future Outlook
Aside from the rebrand, HearUSA has exciting plans to launch a series of concept stores aimed at revolutionizing the hearing care model. The first of these new centers will be established in Florida, with more locations slated for development in the coming years.
These concept stores will feature a “Sound Studio,” providing clients with an immersive audio and visual environment that accurately replicates the unique hearing enhancements they can experience with HearUSA’s industry-leading solutions. B
y allowing individuals to truly experience sound in a personalized manner, these centers aim to redefine how clients learn about, experience, and purchase hearing aids.
Conclusion: A Solid Option with Insurance Coverage
In summary, HearUSA is a reputable option to consider if you have a location in your area. While they may not offer the lowest prices on the market, their extensive insurance coverage sets them apart. Furthermore, if you frequently travel and desire access to hearing care in multiple cities, HearUSA provides a convenient solution.
With its strong affiliation to WS Audiology and ongoing efforts to enhance their offerings, HearUSA continues to evolve as a trusted provider in the hearing health industry.