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Maryland Medicaid expands hearing aid coverage

ANNAPOLIS, MD – With 2019 health insurance plans ready to begin January 1, the Governor’s Office of Deaf and Hard of Hearing (ODHH) and the Maryland Department of Health (MDH) announced a recent change in Maryland Medicaid regulations that allow coverage for medically necessary hearing aids, cochlear implants, and auditory osseointegrated devices for adults over the age of 21 in accordance with federal requirements. Prior to July 1, 2018, Maryland Medicaid only covered hearing aids and cochlear implants for children and young adults under 21 years old.

“Our office received calls asking for financial assistance to help cover the cost of hearing aids due to the high out-of-pocket costs and the lack of coverage through Maryland Medicaid, so we worked with the Department of Health to address this significant gap,” said Kelby Brick, Director of the Governor’s Office of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing. “The Hogan administration’s expansion of Maryland Medicaid coverage for adults provides tremendous financial relief for thousands of eligible Marylanders in need of these vital services.”

Marylanders can access these services by contacting their primary care physician for a referral to an audiologist who can complete an assessment for audiology services.

“We are pleased to make progress towards achieving equitable health care for all Marylanders and the ability to now offer hearing aids and cochlear implants to those over the age of 21,” said Department of Health Secretary Robert R. Neall. “This expansion of coverage is another example of this administration’s commitment to serving Maryland’s 1.2 million deaf and hard of hearing residents.”

More information on the regulation changes can be found on COMAR online. State residents who are eligible for Maryland Medicaid can learn more at www.marylandhealthconnection.gov.

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