Answers to who are audiologists, where do they work, and what is their role in dispensing hearing aids, are provided by the Academy of Doctors of Audiology. Audiologist Directory is available at this site under Resources – Patients. Once you have names, consumers might also check your state’s licensure database
Comparative Effectiveness review: Tympanostomy Tubes in Children With Otitis Media. Purpose was to assess effectiveness and harms of tympanostomy tube (TT) surgery in children with persistent middle ear fluid or recurrent ear infections. Published by AHRQ, May 2017
Brief, consumer-friendly explanation of Ear Tubes, by the American Academy of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery (AAO-HNS). Covers what ear tubes are, who needs them, outpatient surgical procedure, and what to expect after surgery. Complications are reportedly minimal. Link to find an ENT surgeon (Ear/ Nose/ Throat).
Overview of different types of hearing aids, from National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD). Check the link to Assistive Devices also, under “Related Topics” on the right. NIDCD is part of NIH, the National Institutes on Health.
How many people have hearing problems and deafness? Hearing loss is a major problem, estimated to affect about 29% of Americans ages 65 to 74, and nearly half (44%) age 75 years or more). Read what the experts have to say about hearing disorders, digital hearing aids, cochlear implants, deafness, assistive listening devices, hearing & balance, earwax, earbuds compared to headphones, audiometry, testing and hearing screening in infants, and find links to reputable organizations in this field
Get good advice from the FTC on hearing aids. The Federal Trade Commission has prepared this short reference post on buying a hearing aid, getting an ear examination, and having hearing evaluations done by dispensers or audiologists. State regulations may exist in your state, to protect consumers
Learn about hearing loss that goes untreated; hearing aids and PSAPs (Personal Sound Amplification Products). Untreated hearing loss is statistically associated with higher risks of social isolation; depression; dementia; falls with injury; and inability to work, travel, or be physically active, according to this 2015 letter from the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST). Letter defines differences between hearing aids and PSAPs. It cites a 2014 survey that found the average cost of one hearing aid was $2363. Fifteen page report addresses high cost of hearing aids.
Johns Hopkins provides a list of codes that can help consumers ask their insurance companies about the cost of Cochlear Implants. Total costs are unknown for 2019. Past estimates have ranged from $37,000 to $100,000. By asking your insurance company and your hospital to look up the procedure codes, you might be able to get a specific cost estimate for this outpatient procedure.
Find average prices for about 80 outpatient ambulatory surgery procedures done in hospitals in 2007 (excluding surgeon’s or other physician fees.) Average colonoscopy & biopsy price then was $2369; upper GI endoscopy $3131; cataract & lens was $4870; tonsillectomy $5286; knee cartilage $7357; hernia repair $8187; outpatient gallbladder removal (cholecystectomy) $10,838; breast biopsy $3863; lumpectomy $7458; ear tube surgery (myringotomy) $3547; D&C $6366; arthroscopy $8970; incontinence procedures $9929; vericose veins $8459; bunionectomy $7699; wrist fracture $7807; $4770 for circumcision. Consumers will need to adjust the 2007 prices to estimate 2019 costs; add at least 40% for a rough estimate. Overall average was $6100, compared to nearly $40,000 for inpatient surgery. AHRQ Statistical Brief #86 published February 2010 unfortunately still has not been updated. No longer Editor’s Pick
Recommendations from the US Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) for more than 100 Screening tests, Preventive Medication, and Counseling activities. Individual Consumer Guides for all different types of cancer, obesity, high blood pressure, speech and language disorders, hearing loss, chronic kidney disease, depression, diabetes, abdominal aortic aneurysm, sexually transmitted disease, osteoporosis, and much more. Counseling for alcohol misuse, diet and physical activity. Updated 2019. the USPSTF is an independent, volunteer panel of national experts in prevention and evidence-based medicine. Updated 2019
The National Academy of Sciences Health and Medicine division (formerly IOM) has assembled studies and reports of the health of our military and veterans. Topics include chemical and biological agents (including agent orange, mustard gas and sarin); deployment health, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), health of former POWs, and hearing loss/tinnitus. Special reports for Gulf War (Iraqi Freedom), exposure in Afghanistan, Viet Nam, Gulf War, Korean War and World War II veterans. Exit the military and veterans section to find WW II and Korea studies.
Compare average prices for ambulatory outpatient surgery at IA hospitals, before adding surgeon fee or other professional charges. 2018 prices. Check one procedure at a time. Average charge billed last year for Upper GI endoscopy was between $6000 and $6900; Diagnostic Colonoscopy averaged $4,941 excluding physician fees; simple cataract $7442 to $8201; Tonsillectomy over age 11 $10,896; one ear tube $10,265; shoulder surgery $20k to $23,000; laparoscopic gall bladder removal averaged $17k in hospital charges; inguinal hernia repair (laparoscopic) averaged over $21,000. Individual hospitals shown if they have enough volume. From Iowa Hospital Association
Topics for consumers who travel, such as jet lag, ears and altitude, motion sickness, in-flight medicine, traveler first aid kits, Cruise ships, Zika, vaccine recommendations, pregnancy and flying can all be found at this site
Find how much physicians charge for over 100 professional services in Minnesota, ND, SD, WI through Minnesota HealthScores’ Cost Report feature. Compare prices perhaps 500 participating medical groups, and hundreds of clinic locations in Minnesota, and some border communities, for doctor office visits, lab tests, colonoscopy, endoscopy, minor office surgical procedures such as ear wax or wart removal; immunization, psychotherapy. Obstetric services, including inpatient delivery. Medical groups include Allina, Altru, Apple Valley, Aspen, Avera, Brainerd, Children’s Physician Network, Dakota Clinic, Edina, Fairview, Fergus, Grand Itasca, Gundersen, HealthEast, HealthPartners, Lakewood, Mankato, Mayo Clinic, MeritCare, Innovis, North Memorial, Northstar, Olmsted, Osceola, Park Nicollet, Regina, Ridgeview, Sanford, St. Cloud CentraCare, St. Luke’s, St. Mary’s Duluth Clinic, Stillwater, United, University of Minnesota, Winona Clinic, and more; OB-GYN clinics, Report by MN Community Measurement. Does NOT include facility charges which are in the thousands for colonoscopy or childbirth. Interactive easy-to-use format. Costs shown are claims through BCBS, Health Partners, Medica, and Preferred One in 2017 (we think). Unclear if it’s price before or after discounts
Compare MT hospital charges for ambulatory surgery and diagnostic tests such as colonoscopy, sigmoidoscopy, breast biopsy, cardiac stress tests, cardiac catheterization. All prices EXCLUDE surgeon fees and other physician costs. PricePoint system shows facility prices in the past, for common surgical procedures such as tonsillectomy, cataracts, ear tubes, knee cartilage, bunions (median $5483, $2000 more for big toe), child’s appendix removal, carpal tunnel, skin lesions, upper GI endoscopy; x ray, CT, MRI and other radiology imaging prices listed; 2015 costs
Compare up to 3 hospitals at a time on 2016 costs paid by commercial insurance companies or patient-paid amounts. Median amounts paid (not charges) are shown for 100 most common outpatient procedures and 50 most common inpatient procedures. Medicare and Medicaid are excluded. Includes maternity & newborn payments, heart care, stents, cardiac cath, hip and knee replacement, many surgery payments such as cataracts, hernia, hysterectomy, kidney removal, gall bladder, breast biopsy, carpal tunnel, mastectomy, tonsillectomy, endoscopy, shoulder surgery, appendectomy. Amounts paid for CT, MRI, Nuclear Medicine, x-ray and ultrasound; chemotherapy and radiation treatments. Site by the Oregon Association of Hospitals and Health Systems (OAHHS) to meet state requirements. Hospitals also list their financial performance measures for 2017 at this website.
US News list of best hospitals for 2019 in ear, nose and throat, uses 3 years of Medicare data (minimum number of 120 Medicare inpatients over 3 years 2015-2017), to select the top 50 best hospitals for ENT. Top of the list: Mayo Clinic (Rochester, Minnesota) and Massachusetts Eye and Ear Hospital (Massachusetts General Hospital) in Boston, MA . Strong weight to Reputation scores and volume. Rankings also consider survival rates
What does ambulatory surgery cost in in Vermont? See Section called Pricing, Charges by Hospital. Table 2A lets you compare average gross charge (the closest you will get to average cost) for most common outpatient surgical procedures at 14 general hospitals in VT. Prices for procedures such as cataract surgery (average $6074), upper GI endoscopy ($5420), knee cartilage surgery ($9520 average), arthrocentesis joint aspiration ($700), gall bladder removal (average $13,484), breast biopsy (avg. $4213), other biopsies, ear tubes (average $3530), tonsillectomy ($6948), pacemaker ($9254), bunion removal (12,114 avg), colonoscopy $3694 average; range $1575 at Northwestern Medical Center to $5169 at North Country Hospital; hernia repair $12,000; excision of skin lesion $2417; fetal monitoring cost $784; circumcision cost $4239; outpatient hysterectomy $21,995; peritoneal dialysis ($10,575), and many more procedures. 12-month avg. charges ending Sept. 30, 2017, DO NOT include the surgeon or other physician fees. As with all of Vermont’s reports, the font size is about as small as you can get. About two years old, published 2019. Table 2B shows how many of those procedures the hospital did.
Wisconsin ambulatory surgery facility charges (prices) for 2018 for each hospital and freestanding ambulatory surgery center How much does outpatient surgery cost in WI? Scroll to bottom of page for Chapters VI and VII Ambulatory Surgery. Find average 2018 charges for 20 common ambulatory surgery procedures, such as Colonoscopy (6 codes), Endoscopy, Biopsy, Spinal Injection, Cataract & Lens ($7,439 hospital average), outpatient Knee surgery/arthroscopy ($11,699), Carpal Tunnel ($6,548), Ear Tubes, and more. Volumes for each hospital and surgical center are shown for top 20 only. Go to Table 28 in Chapter VI for a longer list of 40 procedures including colonoscopy & biopsy, code 45380 ($5,478 average) and gall bladder removal (laparoscopic cholecystectomy at $18,389). Chapter VII compares average prices (along with median charge and number of cases) at each hospital and surgery center for twenty 2018 ambulatory surgeries. Prices do NOT include surgeon and physician fees, which may cost thousands of dollars and could double prices shown. Consumers should add medical inflation to estimate 2019 facility prices. Health Care Data Report 2018 published by WHA Information Center September 2019.
Compare outpatient and ambulatory surgery volume and charges for colonoscopy, cataracts, eardrum surgery, shoulder or knee surgery, carpal tunnel surgery, removal of tonsils & adenoids, appendectomy, breast biopsy, endoscopy, gallbladder (cholecystectomy), upper GI, heart catheterization and more. Compare hospitals and surgical centers. Typical (median) price in county and statewide Wisconsin median prices shown, but no dates are provided on the consumer site. Must use the healthcare professionals site to see the dates and the volumes done at each hospital; 2018-2019 prices are shown. Prices exclude surgeon and other doctors’ fees which may double the numbers you see here