Hearing Healthcare: Fish or Fowl?

March Phonak-Costco Madness ushered in urgency to the health of hearing healthcare providers.  March Mayhem was foreshadowed for 3 years in Hearing Economics posts, starting with resurrection of 1990s prognostications of professional schizophrenia and bimodalism stemming from creative destruction. And lo, it came to pass as disruptive technologies and economics came among us and we were sore afraid. Otherwise,…

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Costco and Phonak: Much Ado About Nothing?

Inquiring minds want to know about the imminent Phonak-Costco partnership. HHTM readership soared last week after David Kirkwood  reported corporate confirmation of the deal and Hearing Economics began sorting the deal’s rumors from reality. Elsewhere, web-based professional and social media rapidly filled with Audiologists’ tears of betrayal, stories of heartbreak, fear and growing outrage. Readers will want…

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Phonak, Costco, LiNX, MFi Hearing Aids: Rumors and Realities

Two long-rumored events became reality in the last week or so, both of which will likely have long-term effects on the practice of dispensing Audiology.  Both have already elicited large short-term effects in the chatter level and hand wringing departments of our profession. Phonak Rumors and Realities   The Rumor Mill Hearing Economics got an…

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Are Hearing Aids Getting Pricier?

“The hearing aid industry uses every new thing, like digital or a new algorithm, to raise prices.”  CEO of a manufacturer of low-cost, app-smart hearing aids. Really?  Is the hearing aid industry conniving and villainous to consumers?  Do hearing aids really cost $6000/pair? If so, why has that rule of thumb stayed constant for a…

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More on Costco and Audiologists: Apples to Apples?

Hearing Economics went out on a testimonial limb two weeks ago by describing one Audiologist’s positive interactions with a local Costco dispensing operation.  The Audiologist was me and I braced myself for an onslaught of insults and vituperation from colleagues.  Remarkably, that has not happened (yet) and I’ve canceled my reservation for the witness protection program.…

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