Sources of Financial Assistance & Donated Aids:
Hearing aids can cost from several hundred to thousands of dollars. There are a number of sources of financial assistance for people needing to purchase aids. However some sources of assistance are only available through members of the NEW ZEALAND AUDIOLOGICAL SOCIETY & people need to be aware that not all businesses offering hearing tests & selling aids will have a member on their staff. 0800 625 166 A list of members can be found on the Society’s website: www.audiology.org.nz
A MINISTRY OF HEALTH subsidy of $500 (inc. GST) is available to assist people purchase appropriate equipment to maximize their residual hearing where a person has a disability as defined by the MOH. If bilateral fittings are needed, the subsidy is $1000. The subsidy is available once every 5 years where there has been a change of hearing, necessitating a new prescription. Subsidised hearing aids must be on the “approved hearing aid subsidy list” & the audiologist undertaking the assessment & prescription for the hearing aid(s) must be a member of the NZ Audiological Society. The subsidy is not available for purchasing 2nd hand hearing aid(s). To obtain the subsidy an application form must be completed & signed by both the person & audiologist who undertook the assessment & prescription. There are exclusions including people who qualify for assistance from other sources.
People with noise induced hearing loss or learning loss resulting from an accident can be funded for audiology services & hearing aids, on the referral of a medical specialist.
People with hearing loss resulting from war experiences can be funded for audiology services & hearing aids on the referral of a medical specialist.
People with limited funds & who do not qualify for government funding for hearing aids can access hearing aids through a member of the NZ AUDIOLOGICAL SOCIETY in 2 ways:
1. The Society has actual hearing aids donated by hearing aid manufacturers, which are available to all ages. They are not the latest & very expensive models.
2. The Society has a fund whereby persons 65 years & over can get a contribution of $500 per hearing aid.
Applications can be made by any member of the NZ Audiological Society.
WORK & INCOME may make a recoverable assistance payment for hearing aids up to $1000 (can exceed this where exceptional circumstances exist) if certain qualifications are met. Work & Income will require a quote & the cost of a consultation can be included in the assistance payment.
Funding is not available through the Lottery Board for hearing aids & many trusts do not make grants to individuals. The CANTERBURY COMMUNITY TRUST has a “MAKING IT HAPPEN” AWARDS scheme. These awards for individuals, are to assist in providing solutions, or opportunities for “Making it Happen” in situations where support funding can develop skills, change social attitudes & help extend & develop an individual’s potential. It is intended that a “Making it Happen” Award is for a genuine need when all other avenues of funding have been exhausted. The intention of the scheme is not to fully fund an individual but through partnership funding provide a donation to assist the application. Maximum grant per application is $1000 but this is not guaranteed & depends on funds available, amount of applications & reason for application. Applications are considered 4 times per year & need to be received by the end of March, June, September & December. Applications are made on a “Making it Happen” Awards – Disabled application form & sent to: Parafed Canterbury, Mr Ken Sowden, PO Box 35 080, Shirley, Christchurch, telephone (03) 385 4449.
The object of the W S MACGIBBON BENEVOLENT TRUST is “to assist the general good of all aged & needy people in & around the provincial district of Canterbury” & includes to further “the provision of personal help & monetary assistance, including monetary grants for such items as medical, dental, optical, or such other care as is approved by the Board. There is an application form & a statement needs to be signed by a Minister of Religion or social worker. Applications can be made at any time to: The Secretary, W S MacGibbon Benevolent Trust Board (Inc), Knox Presbyterian Church, 28 Bealey Avenue, Christchurch.
PEGASUS TRUST – small amounts of assistance up to $100, apply through GP.
HEARING AID MANAGEMENT SUPPORT IN THE COMMUNITY:
Hearing Therapy Services (LIFE Unlimited), telephone 366 5497. Email – firstname.lastname@example.org
Address – 79 Bealey Ave, Christchurch
Funded by the MOH this is a free service for any person over 16. An appointment can be made to see a hearing therapist & if a person has a double disability, a home visit can be arranged. A Hearing Therapist advises & supports anybody who experiences difficulty in communicating effectively because of a hearing problem.
A Hearing Therapist can:
– Do a hearing evaluation & discuss the problem with you.
– Help you use your hearing more effectively.
– Teach ways of improving your communication skills.
– Help you use hearing aid(s) to greater effect.
– Give information about equipment available to assist with daily living, e.g. telephone, television.
– Offer information & advice to you & your family.
– Teach speech reading & provide auditory training.
– Offer advice, practical help to people with tinnitus.
– Provide information about hearing loss & its prevention to professional groups, voluntary organisation & the general public.
The therapist may be able to assist in making an application for funding from one of the sources already mentioned.
CHRISTCHURCH HEARING ASSOCATION, describes itself as a voluntary organisation which offers unbiased information about hearing matters to all & offers a valuable first port of call to the hearing impaired, their families & friends. Email – email@example.com
Phone – 341 6705
Fax – 341 6805
Address – 275 Riccarton Road, CHRISTCHURCH 8041
Postal address – P O Box 6460, CHRISTCHURCH 8442