High quality hearing aids are expensive. A good hearing aid can easily cost several thousand francs – per ear. Many people living in Switzerland assume that their health insurance will cover the cost of hearing aids, if and when they need them. Unfortunately, that expectation doesn’t quite line up with the facts. In most cases, only the IV/AI (invalidity insurance) or AHV/AVS (state pension fund) will pitch in towards the costs.
No coverage provided by basic compulsory health insurance
The basic obligatory health insurance normally does not cover any of the costs of hearing aids, as these are not included in the official list of covered aids and equipment (MiGeL/LiMA).
The costs of hearing assistance devices are only covered if the insured person has failed to meet eligibility requirements for IV or AHV benefits, and therefore is not eligible for AHV/IV benefits.
Hearing aids: AHV and IV flat-rates
Adults capable of working are eligible to receive a flat-rate benefit of 840 francs towards a hearing aid (1,650 francs for both ears) from the IV every 6 years.
Pensioners are eligible to receive a maximum benefit of 630 francs towards a basic, necessary hearing aid from the AHV (normally for a single ear only).
The IV also contributes 40 per hearing aid towards the cost of batteries. A benefit of 130 francs is paid out towards the repair of a single hearing aid, and a 200-franc benefit is paid out when hearing aids for both ears need repairs.
In short, benefits provided by the IV are much higher than those paid out by the AHV.
Hearing aids: supplementary health insurance benefits?
Although your basic health insurance policy generally does not provide hearing aid benefits, some outpatient supplementary health insurance policies do provide this benefit. On these policies, hearing aids are categorized as medical aids.
For example, the supplementary health insurance policy Mivita Reala from Atupri covers 50% of the cost of medical aids, but only up to a maximum of 750 francs per year. The Mivita Extensa policy extends this coverage to 1000 francs per year.
The moneyland.ch team