What about hearing aids from the VA? (Eyeglasses too)
1. PURPOSE: This Veterans Health Administration (VHA) Directive provides policy for uniform criteria necessary for prescribing hearing aids and eyeglasses (sensori-neural aids) to veteran patients.
2. BACKGROUND: Public Law 104-262, the Veterans Health Care Eligibility Reform Act of 1996, changed eligibility laws to allow VHA to furnish prosthetic appliances to veterans. However, that law further provided that VHA could not furnish sensori-neural aids (hearing aids and eyeglasses) except in accordance with guidelines that the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) prescribes. Subsequently, the Department published regulations (Title 38 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), §17.149) in the Federal Register establishing such guidelines. In 2002, VHA issued Directive 2002-039 to establish uniform policy for the provision of hearing aids and eyeglasses.
1. Can I get a hearing aid from the VA?
It is National VA Policy that hearing aids are furnished to eligible veterans in accordance with the restrictions defined in a VA Directive 2002-039 released July 5, 2002. Briefly, the Directive explains that eligibility for hearing aids is currently limited to veterans with a documented service connected hearing loss, veterans receiving a disability rating of 10% or more - for a condition other than hearing loss, and some veterans with very special needs. With the exception of veterans with documented service connection for hearing loss, an eligible veteran must be currently enrolled in and receiving healthcare from a VA Medical Center or VA Outpatient Clinic.
Hearing aids are not customarily provided to non-service connected veterans. However, if there is a medical reason, a VA Physician can refer a non-service connected veteran for a hearing evaluation.
If you are not certain about your eligibility status, check the blue pages of your local phone directory for the number of your local Veterans Benefits counselor, or, call your nearest VA and ask for the Veterans Service Center. You may also contact the VA Health Benefits Service Center toll free at 1-877-222-VETS.
Adjusting to a new hearing aid can be a confusing and difficult experience. This booklet offers some suggestions to help you adjust to your new hearing aid.