The hearing healthcare industry has two barriers that prevent individuals from obtaining healthier hearing:
- The inability to recognize hearing loss in the first place (owing to its slow onset), and
- The temptation to find a quick, easy, and inexpensive solution.
Unfortunately, numerous people who have overcome the first barrier have been lured into the supposedly “cheaper and easier” practices of correcting their hearing loss, whether it be through the purchase of hearing aids on the web, the purchase of personal sound amplifiers, or by visiting the big box stores that are much more concerned with profitability than with patient care.
In spite of the lure of these quick remedies, the truth is that local hearing care providers are your best bet for better hearing, and here are the reasons why.
Local hearing care providers use a customer-centric business model
National chain stores are profitable for one primary reason: they sell a high volume of discounted goods and services at low prices in the name of larger revenues. National chains are focused on efficiency, which is a pleasant way of saying “get as many people in and out the door as rapidly as possible.”
Admittedly, this profit-centric model works great with most purchases, because you probably don’t need professional, personalized care to help pick out your undershirts and bath soap. Consumer support simply doesn’t factor in.
However, problems arise when this business model is expanded to services that do require expert, personalized care—such as the correction of hearing loss. National chains are not focused on patient outcomes because they can’t be; it’s too time consuming and flies in the face of the high volume “see as many patients as possible” business model.
Local hearing care providers are different. They’re not preoccupied with short-term profits because they don’t have a board of directors to report to. The level of success of a local practice is based upon on patient outcomes and high quality of care, which brings about satisfied patients who remain faithful to the practice and disperse the positive word-of-mouth advertising that leads to more referrals.
Local practices, for that reason, thrive on delivering quality care, which will benefit both the patient and the practice. In contrast, what will happen if a national chain can’t deliver quality care and satisfied patients? Simple, they use national advertising to get a endless flow of new patients, promising the same “quick and cheap fix” that lured in the original customers.
Local hearing care providers have more experience
Hearing is complex, and like our fingerprints, is unique to everyone, so the frequencies I may have trouble hearing are different from the frequencies you have trouble hearing. In other words, you can’t just take surrounding sound, make it all louder, and pump it into your ears and expect good results. But this is in essence what personal sound amplifiers, along with the cheaper hearing aid models, accomplish.
The truth is, the sounds your hearing aids amplify—AND the sounds they don’t—HAVE to match the way you, and only you, hear. That’s only going to occur by:
- Having your hearing professionally examined so you know the EXACT characteristics of your hearing loss, and…
- Having your hearing aids professionally programmed to intensify the sounds you have trouble hearing while differentiating and repressing the sounds you don’t want to hear (such as low-frequency background sound).
For the hearing care provider, this is no easy task. It requires a great deal of training and patient care experience to have the ability to carry out a hearing test, help patients select the right hearing aid, skillfully program the hearing aids, and supply the patient coaching and aftercare necessary for optimal hearing. There are no cutting corners to delivering comprehensive hearing care—but the results are well worth the time and energy.
Make your choice
So, who do you want to trust with your hearing? To someone who views you as a transaction, as a customer, and as a means to attaining sales targets? Or to an experienced local professional that cares about the same thing you do—helping you attain the best hearing possible, which, by the way, is the lifeblood of the local practice.
As a basic rule, we advise that you avoid buying your hearing aids anywhere you see a sign that reads “10 items or less.” As local, experienced hearing professionals, we provide thorough hearing healthcare and the best hearing technology to match your specific needs, lifestyle, and budget.
Still have questions? Give us a call today.