Getting money back for hearing aids

Seven On Your Side
August 11, 2008 2:47:43 PM PDT
A New Jersey woman was thrilled when she got her hearing aids, for the first time in years, she could hear the world around her. But then her doctor said she would not be fully reimbursed by her insurance company. So she called Seven on your Side to help. Kay-Ann Coviello thought she might have a hearing problem when she couldn't hear her noisy birds.

"I guess I was hearing things, but it was dull and I didn't know I was living in a dull world," she said.

So Kay-Ann went to the hearing doctor who confirmed her suspicions.

Kay-Ann adds, "That's when they said, yes, you do have a hearing loss, more profound in your left ear than your right."

So Kay-Ann got fitted for state-of-the art hearing aids.

They opened up a whole new world of sound, but also started ten months of frustration.

Kay-Ann had paid the doctor $4,400 out of her own pocket. She expected to be reimbursed by her insurance company.

Blue Cross/Blue Shield had sent a check for $2,000 to the doctor, but Kay-Ann refused to accept it. She wanted the full amount.

"I called them (the insurance company) every Friday for ten months. And they were adamant that the doctor was participating and they were supposed to refund me the $4,200," adds Kay-Ann.

When Seven on your Side called the doctor, we found that, indeed, he was something called a participating provider.

That means he agreed to accept what the insurance company deems a reasonable price for a service and that was $2,000.

After we explained this to the doctor , he refunded Kay-Ann the amount she paid, less her deductible. A total of $4,200.

"I'm thankful for Seven on Your Side for ending this crazy nightmare," said Kay-Ann.

The doctor's office told us they thought the insurance company was supposed to pay Kay-Ann. They said it took months to figure out that they had to accept the payment the insurance company offered and refund Kay-Ann's money.

STORY BY: Eyewitness News Consumer reporter Tappy Phillips.

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