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Dear Avalon family,

Do you remember this song from the play and movie, Fiddler on the Roof? It goes like this –

“Matchmaker, Matchmaker
Make me a match,
Find me a find,
Catch me a catch.
Matchmaker, Matchmaker
Look through your book,
And make me a perfect match.”

These words were sung by two young women from the small Jewish village of Anatevka, Russia in 1905. In the song, they express their concerns about the Matchmaker finding them the right husband for the arranged marriages of the time. Sometimes, being ‘assigned’ a husband worked out and sometimes it didn’t.

Let’s take the analogy of a Matchmaker and apply it to finding the right hearing care provider
Often, one is assigned to a specific provider by their insurance company. The insurance company in essence becomes the matchmaker for your hearing care. Sometimes that works and sometimes it doesn’t. Here’s a telling story.

 

Judy was adopted into the Avalon family over twelve years ago 
She came to Avalon when she was still working as a nurse in a hospital setting. Her moderate to severe hearing loss made her job extremely challenging even with the best hearing technology for her hearing loss. During her regular hearing care appointments, we continually helped her hear the best she could, and guided her in making small changes in her work environment to make communication easier.

Judy retired a couple of years ago and moved to Oregon in 2021. We were both sad that I could no longer provide her hearing care.  The drive to Avalon would definitely be too long! 

Recently, Judy called me for some advice 
Judy was having trouble with her current hearing aids and was delighted to learn that her new insurance company offered a “hearing aid benefit”. They claimed that they would pay half of the cost of hearing aids which would make a big difference for Judy. She was referred to a hearing aid office in her town. They matched her up to this guy who sells hearing aids. He sold her “not the best technology” but it still cost her $3900. In the end, her insurance company only paid $357. 

Too many red flags
Judy told me her hearing aids were paired to her cell phone, but the connection was inconsistent, and kept dropping off. She told the guy about this problem. He did nothing to try to solve the problem. Instead, he told her, “That happens all the time. It’s normal.” That was the first red flag that this ‘match’ was not a good for Judy. 🚩

Next, I asked Judy how the clarity was with her new hearing aids. She said she didn’t notice any difference between these new hearing aids and her old ones. The only reason she bought new hearing aids is because one of her old ones broke. He didn’t even try to fix it. Red flag #2. 🚩

When I asked what her speech understanding score was, she told me that the guy had never tested her hearing. 

Betty: “What do you mean? He didn’t test your hearing?”
Judy said that the guy used a copy of a test Avalon had done 30 months ago. Hearing can change a lot in two and a half years. HE DID NOT TEST HER HEARING. HE JUST SOLD HER HEARING AIDS. And every time she ‘complained’ about her fitting, he told her it was because of the severity of her hearing loss.  Red flag #3. 🚩

What Judy said next made me sad, and it infuriated me. 

Judy: “I thought it was me…that I was doing something wrong.”
Judy is a competent human being. I assured her that she did nothing wrong. The guy who sold her didn’t even bother to test her hearing. Nor did he take the time to resolve some valid concerns she had with the fitting. By the way, any competent provider will test your hearing before recommending a hearing aid fitting and be there after the sale.

Judy was so relieved after our chat 
My advice was to get a refund from the guy and to advise the insurance company. And I was grateful that Judy felt that she could still reach out for guidance around her hearing needs. She informed me that she was coming to Sacramento for the week of Thanksgiving, so we booked a free EDUCATIONAL Hearing Test and Consultation. Judy then told me that she will be coming to Sacramento to visit family every couple of months. So, we can come back to where the match was made in heaven at Avalon!  

If you’re struggling with your hearing, or maybe feel a bit like the fiddler on the roof, trying to balance with the uncertainty of life with hearing loss, would you please schedule your free EDUCATIONAL Hearing Test & Consultation, today?  

Yours for CONNECTED Hearing & Living,

💙 Betty Vosters-Kemp, BC-HIS
Owner, Avalon Hearing Aid Centers, Inc.
Board Certified Hearing Instrument Specialist

P.S.  You may even want to break tradition, and not use a ‘Matchmaker’.  You can choose WHO to help you hear better and stay connected to life, despite a hearing loss!

Not Living Happily Ever After

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