TruHearing: Review, Prices, and Alternatives
Hearing loss is a common condition among people of all ages and from all walks of life. The U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH) has found that 37.5 million U.S. adults have some form of hearing loss.
A large majority of this population, 28.8 million U.S. adults, could benefit from using hearing aids. Yet among these 28.8 million people, only 30 percent of those 70 and older actually use hearing aids—a figure which drops to just 16 percent for those between 20 and 69.
There are many reasons why people who could take advantage of hearing aids choose not to do so. Some people prefer not to admit their hearing loss, while others find hearing aids bothersome and difficult for daily use. Hearing aids can also make users feel “old,” and in many cases the cost remains a strong deterrent—typically between $2,000 and $7,000 for each ear.
In order to change the stigma around hearing aids and make them less expensive, companies such as TruHearing are offering low-cost plans for affordable hearing aids. But is TruHearing the best hearing aid solution on the market, or are there better alternatives to TruHearing available? This article will discuss everything you need to know about TruHearing:
- The pros and cons of TruHearing
- The cost of TruHearing
- Reviews for TruHearing
- Other hearing aid options such as MDHearingAid.
What is TruHearing?
TruHearing is a managed care administrator and hearing aid provider that aims to offer affordable hearing aids by working with a variety of health plans. Founded in 2003, TruHearing is currently headquartered in Draper, Utah. The hearing aid manufacturer Sivantos Group acquired TruHearing in April 2018.
The goal of TruHearing is to provide customers with affordable hearing aids. However, it’s important to note that TruHearing does not manufacture any hearing aids itself, and it is not a health insurance provider either.
Instead, TruHearing is an independent company that aims to offer discounts and savings on hearing aids. TruHearing purchases hearing aids from manufacturers, and then resells them to end users. The company acts as a middleman between you, your healthcare providers, and hearing aid manufacturers.
To use TruHearing, customers first need to have a phone conversation with a TruHearing “hearing consultant.” The TruHearing representative answers customers’ questions and then schedules an appointment with a local audiologist or hearing aid specialist who is affiliated with TruHearing.
During this appointment, the TruHearing provider will perform a brief exam and make a diagnosis. The provider will then order the appropriate hearing aids from TruHearing, which will be ready for pickup a few days later. Throughout this process, TruHearing handles paperwork such as insurance policies and claims submissions.
Comparing Options When Purchasing Hearing Aids – Direct, Over The Counter (OTC), and from a Hearing Professional
Consumers can choose from a few options on where to purchase hearing aids, and the price can differ dramatically.
- Traditional Hearing Aid Providers
- Over the counter: Not available yet
- Direct to consumer
- MDHearingAid pioneered selling affordable hearing aids directly to consumers a decade ago. Founded by a doctor frustrated with the high price of hearing aids, MDHearingAid sells affordable, high-quality hearing aids directly to consumers.
- Cost: $399.92 per pair for the best-selling model, with more options available with advance features.
|Cost per Pair||Steps to Buy|
|Traditional Hearing Aid Provider||
In-person hearing test and recommendation from the audiologist or hearing aid specialist
$1,390 – $4,500
Phone call with a TruHearing specialist followed by an in-person hearing test recommendation from the audiologist or hearing aid specialist
|Over-The-Counter (OTC) Hearing Aids||
Not available yet
Not available yet
$399 to $1299
Order online or over the phone and receive hearing aids in a few days. For the CORE model, use the included app to take a hearing assessment and personalize hearing aids to audiologist-level fitting. For more affordable options, take advantage of pre-programmed models that match the vast majority of hearing loss profiles.
TruHearing Pricing: How Much Does TruHearing Cost?
The out-of-pocket cost for hearing aids varies widely, from a lower end of roughly $2,000 to an upper end of $7,000 for the most premium models. According to a 2015 government study, the average price of a hearing aid costs $2,300 for a single hearing aid, and $4,600 for a pair. With prices for hearing aids so high, how much can you save using TruHearing?
According to TruHearing, customers can save thousands of dollars by using its services. However, the true price of TruHearing hearing aids depends both on the hearing aid model you select, as well as your health insurance benefits. TruHearing works with more than 5,000 providers across the country and is compatible with a variety of healthcare plans, including certain Medicare plans.
There are two main programs that TruHearing customers have access to:
- TruHearing Choice: This option is the most widely available of TruHearing’s services. According to the company, TruHearing Choice customers save an average of $980 on their hearing aids, with options priced between $695 and $2,250 per hearing aid. There are three tiers of TruHearing Choice products: standard, advanced, and premium.
- TruHearing Select: This option requires customers to pay small copayments in exchange for receiving digital, smartphone-compatible hearing aids. TruHearing provides less information about the cost savings of this option, saying only that customers can see a “significant” reduction in their out-of-pocket expenses. There are two tiers of TruHearing Select products: advanced (starting at $1,195 per hearing aid) and premium (starting at $1,495 per hearing aid).
Regardless of which plan you use, all TruHearing products come equipped with a 45-day trial and a 3-year warranty that protects against loss, damage, or manufacturer defects. TruHearing also provides 48 free batteries for each hearing aid, and sells 120 batteries for a price of $39.
Finally, the cost of TruHearing hearing aids includes up to three provider visits for hearing aid fittings and consultations. The customer will need to pay for any further visits out of pocket.
With that said, what are the hearing aids available through TruHearing?
As mentioned above, TruHearing offers hearing aids in three price tiers: standard, advanced, and premium.
The ReSound Enya 2 ($695) is an example of a TruHearing standard hearing aid. It includes features such as Digital Feedback Suppression (DFS) technology, adaptive and fixed directionality, and a ReSound smartphone app for fine-tuning performance.
The Widex Evoke 220 ($1,250) is an example of a TruHearing advanced hearing aid. It includes features such as noise reduction for wind and soft noises and a “zen” mode to help with tinnitus.
The Phonak Naida B 70 ($1,575) is an example of a TruHearing premium hearing aid. It includes advanced features such as “UltraZoom,” which helps “zoom in” on people’s voices during a noisy conversation, and “SNR-Boost,” a high-tech algorithm to improve the signal-to-noise ratio.
To see whether TruHearing has the best hearing aid for your needs, you can browse through TruHearing’s hearing aid catalog on their website, where there are hundreds of hearing aid options listed.
TruHearing claims that you can save money on hearing aids by using their services. But what do TruHearing users have to say for themselves?
It’s always a risk when you use a new medical provider, so naturally, you might have questions like “Is TruHearing a scam?” The good news is that most TruHearing reviews report largely positive experiences with the company.
TruHearing has an average rating of 4.6 out of 5 stars on Facebook, based on 196 user opinions. Reviewer Jordan Pinkham says:
“So far my experience with TruHearing has been nothing but positive… I have put off getting hearing aids for years because I did not want to wear them, and I worried about what people would think. I am so thankful that I finally decided to give them a try… Thanks TruHearing for making these instruments more affordable!”
Another 5-star review for TruHearing on Facebook comes from Mike St. Clair, who writes:
“I’ve been fighting the idea of hearing aids for years. I thought they would be very inconvenient, and very costly. I’m now in my third week using Flyte 9’s from TruHearing and wishing I hadn’t waited so long. It’s a delight to be able to hear well, for the first time in my life. The service was great; the price was much less than expected; and it’s much less difficult for others to try and communicate with me.”
Despite the generally positive reception, some customers aren’t happy with TruHearing products. For example, TruHearing has only an average review of 3 out of 5 stars on Yelp, based on 15 user opinions.
Reviewer Alice A. on Yelp says:
“We ordered two hearing aids at $1,000 each for my mother recently. They arrived defective. The tubes are facing the opposite of each ear and the hearing aid dispenser ignored this when fitting them into her ear. I am disappointed and will be returning them at the audiology office, but because the aids are from TruHearing you must pay $125 to do that!”
Yelp reviewer Bob C. is also dissatisfied with the quality of his TruHearing hearing aids, writing:
“I was encouraged to purchase a Starkey rechargeable unit for approximately $1600 based on the results of my exam. After four return visits, I am sorry to say this unit has provided no improvement in my hearing. I continue to miss significant parts of conversations. There is no noticeable hearing difference with or without the device. Needless to say, I am very disappointed.”
To date, TruHearing has received 3 user complaints on the Better Business Bureau website: two related to problems with the product, and one related to advertising or sales issues. All three complaints have been answered or resolved, giving TruHearing an A+ BBB rating. For example, one BBB user complains that the company was slow to provide a refund; however, TruHearing has responded to the complaint, verifying that the refund had been made and was likely waiting to clear the customer’s account.
TruHearing Alternative: MDHearingAid
Whether you purchase a TruHearing hearing aid or not, you owe it to your hearing (and your pocketbook) to investigate some of the highly-dependable, and far-less expensive TruHearing alternatives on the market. We at MDHearingAid offer a compelling alternative.
What if you could get a pair of hearing aids for $399 (instead of $3000)?
Born of a manufacturing philosophy that asks, “Do hearing aids really need to be so expensive?” MDHearingAid offers superior-quality hearing aids at a fraction of the price of competing manufacturers. MDHearingAids are doctor-designed, audiologist tested, FDA-registered, and they provide everything you need for better hearing.
MDHearingAid keeps your costs down by cutting out the middleman and eliminating the need to buy hearing aids from a specialist or hearing clinic. Order your hearing aids direct from MDHearingAid, and they’ll be delivered to your door in just a few days. Your hearing aids will be ready to use, right out of the box. Plus, MDHearingAids come with a 100% money-back guarantee, so trying a pair is absolutely risk-free.
Here are some noteworthy advantages of MDHearingAids:
- Highly-Responsive Audiologist-Trained User Support: If you’re worried that you can’t set up your MDHearingAids yourself, MDHearingAid offers U.S.-based support with on-call, audiologist-trained specialists, who average a 5 to 10 minute response time. The MDHearingAid support team walks you through every step of the set-up process and answers any questions you have.
- 100% Money-Back Guarantee: If you don’t like your MDHearingAids, send them back for a 100% refund (click this link to read our refund policy). No questions asked!
- The Same Component Manufacturers as Expensive Hearing Aids: MDHearingAid sources its microphones and receivers from the same manufacturers (Knowles and Sonion) that high-end hearing aid companies use. We source the computer chips in our hearing aids from a US-based manufacturer with decades of experience.
- Customized Fit Without a Specialist: MDHearingAid offers different sizes of clear tubing, tips, and ear domes to accommodate nearly all ear sizes comfortably. You don’t have to pay extra for a professional to customize them to your ears.
- US-Based Company founded a Decade Ago: A Chicago Ear, Nose and Throat doctor founded MDHearingAid over a decade ago. The company’s headquarters still reside in Chicago. MDHearingAid tests and assembles all hearing aids in Southfield, Michigan at its fulfillment and support center.
- 500,000+ Customers Served: MDHearingAid has supplied over 500,000 customers with hearing aids.
- Affordable Models Designed to Work Without A Hearing Test: Our on-staff audiologists designed our PRO and AIR hearing aids to fit the hearing loss profile of 80%-85% of consumers. This means our hearing aids work well right out of the box for the majority of people. Consumers that have already had a hearing test can send their audiogram to our audiologists and get a personalized recommendation on which hearing aid will best fit their needs.
- Advanced Model With a Hearing Assessment Included: Our CORE model comes with an app that walks a user through a personalized hearing assessment and programs the hearing aids to the user’s specific hearing loss profile. It’s like having an audiologist in your pocket!
MDHearingAid Product Offerings:
The first thing that stands out on the MDHearingAid website is its simplicity. Unlike navigating TruHearing’s website – which leaves you dizzy with hundreds of options – MDHearingAid has three hearing aid models to choose from. That’s right, three – no questions about “programs” and no confusion over what model/price you need.
Here are the MDHearingAid models with their prices. Whether it be low pricing or the highest technology, each MDHearingAid model offers distinct advantages:
The MDHearingAid AIR:
The MDHearingAid AIR model uses modern, digital technology for better noise cancelation, feedback reduction, and additional pre-programmed “sound environments” for improved listening in any situation. The AIR offers the following benefits:
- Three settings to suit the listening environment you’re in.
- Feedback cancellation technology to stop loud “whistling” sounds.
- Excellent for talking on the phone, watching television, listening in noisy environments, and having crystal clear conversations.
The LifeEar® CORE:
The LifeEar® CORE is the most technologically-advanced hearing aid model offered by MDHearingAid. As a cutting-edge digital hearing aid, LifeEar® CORE puts all the control in your hands, allowing you to adjust and optimize your hearing aid to professional standards without ever setting foot in a clinic. Here are the benefits offered by LifeEar® CORE:
- Automatically adapts to your environment as listening conditions change to focus on the sounds and voices that you want to hear.
- The LifeEar® App lets you set up hearing profiles to personalize your hearing experience for crisp, clear conversations. By following simple steps and prompts within the LifeEar® App, CORE personalizes itself to your unique hearing needs, no hearing aid technician required.
- With two directional microphones, CORE allows you to have amazing conversations in the noisiest of environments.
MDHearingAid has received a rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars from Consumers Advocate. Reviewer Homer S. writes:
“I bought a pair of these about 4 years ago. After about a year of successful wearing, I found I was qualified to receive a pair of custom hearing aids from the VA. After 3 years of the VA hearing aids, they broke down and were sent off to be repaired. I merely went back to my MD Pro hearing aids! … They are excellent for what they cost!”
Users on the online review platform Sitejabber have given MDHearingAid an average rating of 4.2 out of 5 stars, based on 36 reviews. Bill B. writes:
“The MDHearingAid AIR hearing aids work great. I have reduced the volume on the TV by 40 percent… These hearing aids are close to invisible. A very good value for the money.”
Most TruHearing customers seem to be satisfied with the service, giving the company high marks. However, a minority of TruHearing reviewers complain about issues such as poor-quality products and deficient customer service.
For these reasons, would-be TruHearing customers should also investigate TruHearing alternatives such as MDHearingAid to find the solution that best meets their needs and budget.
Are you looking for affordable, high-quality hearing aids that won’t break the bank? MDHearingAid can help. Get in touch with us today so we can help you decide which products are the right fit for your situation.