U.S. Rep. Joe Neguse last week introduced legislation to require coverage for bone construction hearing aids and implants from private health insurance, which stemmed from the visit of a 10-year-old Broomfield girl earlier this year.
The Daily Camera reports that Ally Tumblin, who lives in Neguse’s congressional district, was born without a right ear canal and had written a letter to Neguse asking for his help on behalf of those needing coverage.
“For Ally and others with varying modes of hearing loss, OIDs are miraculous devices that create opportunities for them to actively participate in our communities,” said Neguse, referring to osseointegrated hearing devices. “We must ensure that insurance coverage for hearing devices is consistent and fair, to ensure every child can thrive and obtain the healthcare they deserve.”
Ally’s mother, Melissa Tumblin, formed the organization Ear Community to advocate for insurance coverage after their own family’s denial.
A 2007 study reported that people with untreated hearing loss are “more likely to report depression, anxiety and paranoia, and in addition, are less likely to participate in organized social activities when compared with those who wear hearing aids.”
Between two and three out of every 1,000 children in the U.S. are born with some detectable hearing loss.