SPRINGFIELD, ILLINOIS — The Illinois legislature has passed House Bill 3503, which requires insurance companies to provide optional coverage for hearing aids and related services for all individuals 65 years of age and older when they are prescribed by a hearing care professional. The legislation was championed by State Senator Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant (D-Shorewood).
House Bill 3503 passed the Senate and House with bipartisan support. Representative Natalie Manley (D-Joliet) was the lead sponsor in the House.
“There have been recent studies that have shown important links between hearing loss and feelings of depression or isolation. However, hearing aids are often a burdensome expense to seniors who are on a limited income to begin with. The goal of this legislation is to ensure this medically necessary equipment is financially accessible to Illinois residents.” –Sen. Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant
Under the new bill, insurance companies are required to cover up to $2,500 per hearing aid every 24 months. However, individuals will have the option to purchase more expensive devices and pay the difference if they choose to.
The new law is slated to take effect on Jan. 1, 2020.