Which? Magazine conducted their first hearing-aids satisfaction survey quizzing 1,215 members about their experiences. A third of which bought hearing aids privately. Highlights of the report found: -
1. Levels of long term satisfaction among hearing-aid users are high - 94% of customers who paid to go private are marginally more satisfied versus 86% satisfaction for the NHS.
2. Independent providers were given five-star ratings in all categories and were rated higher than the 4 major high street providers who were ranked in the following order Boots Hearingcare (David Ormerod), Amplifon, Specsavers Hearcare and Hidden Hearing.
3. Many people aren’t sure what they should be paying as many companies do not publish their prices online and it’s therefore difficult to compare as packages don’t always include the same products and services.
4. A fifth of customers felt under pressure to select pricier hearing aids however this pressure was recorded as being less likely felt at independents.
5. Those using a private provider waited just under a week for an appointment whilst those using the NHS waited just under 4 weeks.
6. The average cost of those surveyed paid for their hearing aids was £2,523 but this varied by provider.
Which advised “The difference between a good and bad hearing-aid outcome is not often the aids themselves – it’s more to do with the fit and service given by the provider”.
What we say
This surveys shows that independents are a great provider for private hearing care and should not be ignored over the high street chains. Independents offer a great service for those who choose the benefits of private hearing care over our wonderful NHS service.
However, it is important to remember that all independents are different and you should always ensure that you understand what you are paying for when investing in hearing solutions and care. Make sure that you feel that you can build a relationship of trust with your dispenser.