FAQ


General Question - What does it cost to find out if I have hearing loss?

If you are only curious about your hearing or want a baseline measurement, book an appointment for a hearing evaluation and consultation. The Advanced Group of Clinics
does not charge for an educational consultation.

General Question - How much do hearing instruments cost?

Hearing instruments range in price from approximately $1300 to as much as $3600
each. In Ontario, there are many agencies that help with the cost of hearing aids for
Ontario residents and for individuals who find that obtaining hearing aids is cost
prohibitive. Our consultation is done at no cost and it takes only an hour of your time with our audiologists to discuss your needs, prices and funding. Investigate your personal insurance to see if they cover any portion of the cost of hearing aids.

General Question - How do I pay for the hearing instruments?

A deposit is required at the time of the order and the balance is payable within a three
month time frame. Cash, cheque and credit card payments (Mastercard, Visa, and
American Express) are accepted. If you wish to finance your hearing instrument purchase,
ask our audiologists about your financing options.

General Question- What does it cost to exchange my hearing instruments for something different?

During the 60 day trial period you can exchange or return your hearing instruments. IF more time is needed, trial periods can be extended. It is during the trial period that the clinician assesses the efficacy of the devices. At times, prescriptions can be modified to
ensure that you are receiving the proper instruments to optimize your hearing levels. Most people who exchange their instruments do so because they want the benefits that come with higher end instruments. At the Advanced Group of Clinics, we charge only the difference in the cost of the hearing instruments which in some cases could even include a refund to the customer because the new instruments they select may be less expensive.

General Question - If I change my mind and don't want to wear hearing instruments, what does it cost to return them?

During the trial period you have the option of returning the hearing instruments. A full
refund less a service fee per instrument for services to date will be refunded.

General Question - Is the refund fee lost forever?

The Advanced Group of Clinics will gladly apply your return fee to a hearing
instrument purchase any time within two years of the return. Most hearing instruments that are returned is due to the fact that someone is not mentally prepared to hear better with assistance. The same people are usually prepared within a one year period.

Hearing Instrument Question - What kind of hearing instruments do you have?

Advanced Hearing Aid Clinic carries a wide variety of manufacturer's hearing instruments. For information on the major manufacturers, refer to the links to our products page.

Important Note: In an era where there is a lot of activity into the research and
development of new and improved hearing aid circuits by different manufacturers, our Audiologists are constantly assessing the benefits and efficacy of this technology. It is important to discuss newer technology with one of our Audiologists. Bear in mind that accessing information on a manufacturer's website may provide you with a skewed
perception. No manufacturer will admit that they produce a "poor" or "ok" hearing aid. It is in your best interest to discuss optimal technologies for your individual hearing needs with one of our hearing healthcare staff.

Hearing Instrument Question - What is the benefit of digital hearing instruments?

Today's digital hearing instruments are far superior to analogue and even the first
generation digital hearing instruments. Digital hearing aids can precisely fit any type of hearing loss for superior distortion free sound quality and some can even control background noise effectively (refer to the Advanced Technology section on this website for more information on digital circuitry).

Hearing Instrument Question - How do I know which style of hearing instrument is appropriate for me?

A hearing test, lifestyle evaluation and needs assessment with your audiologist can help determine the best brand, technology, model and style of hearing instrument appropriate for you. Speech-In-Noise testing will provide our clinicians with additional information about the need for directional microphone technology, which will dictate the style to some degree.

Acquisition Question - How long does it take to obtain a hearing instrument?

Once the ear impression is taken and is sent to the manufacturer, a finished hearing
instrument arrives in approximately 10 to 15 business days. A rush delivery of 48 to 72
hours can be acquired for a small additional fee from most manufacturers.

Acquisition Question - What happens at the hearing instrument fitting appointment?

The fitting appointment typically requires 60 minutes. At this appointment, your new
hearing instruments will be programmed for your hearing loss and your lifestyle. An
audiologist will also perform an REM (real ear measurement) or Digital Speech Mapping evaluation to ensure that you are receiving adequate gain for your hearing loss. The REM and/or Speech Mapping evaluation is an extremely important part of the fitting. It allows the audiologist to accurately fit the frequency response of the hearing instruments to the user's ear and to ensure that tolerance parameters are maintained. Proper amplification can reduce the effects of auditory deprivation (see tab on Auditory Deprivation).

Acquisition Question - What is the importance of the REM or Speech Mapping?

All hearing instruments are designed to be most effective with a frequency response (to simplify - the bass and treble settings) based on the type, degree and configuration of the hearing loss and the technology within the hearing instruments. The problem that arises is
that each ear has its own unique physical characteristics which influence the frequency response. A smaller ear canal will increase the power of a hearing instrument (which results in uncomfortably loud amplification) and a larger ear canal will decrease the power of a hearing instrument (which results in unusually quiet amplification). An REM or Digital Speech Mapping will precisely measure the power created or deleted by your unique ear canal characteristics allowing the audiologist the opportunity to precisely correct for it with the hearing instrument software. Simply stated, without an REM you may not acquire the most effective benefits of amplification and you may be unsatisfied with your hearing instruments. The signal used to test with REMs is a pure tone sweep, a simulated speech signal, a music file, or simulated listening situations (such as a voice in noise or a restaurant situation).

There has been much current research on verification of amplification once the hearing aid is placed in the patients' ear. Some researchers and clinicians will do speech mapping instead of REM, as an actual speech signal is used to assess the gain one receives through the hearing aid (your significant other can speak into a microphone and the hearing aids can be adjusted accordingly). Further, our advanced equipment, which is unique to our clinic, can simulate a hearing loss. Your actual hearing test can be inputted into the computer so that others can actually hear what the world sounds like to and individual with a particular hearing loss. Different types of sound stimuli (men's voice, woman's voice, speech in quiet, speech in noise, and different types of music) can be used to demonstrate your hearing levels and will show others how you perceive these different types of sounds. Measurements of soft, medium and loud sounds are also done to ensure
that the hearing instruments are also providing the appropriate gain at exposure to these levels. Measurements of tolerance are also done.

* ADVANCED HEARING AID CLINIC OFFERS BOTH METHODS OF VERIFICATION. BOTH
EVALUATIONS ARE ACCEPTABLE METHODS OF VERIFICATION, HOWEVER, SPEECH
MAPPING MAY PROVIDE MORE PERTINENT INFORMATION ABOUT ACTUAL SPEECH
PERCEPTION. SPEECH MAPPING IS MORE COMMONPLACE AT THE PREMIER
HEARING HEALTH CLINICS.

Short-term Follow-up Question - What if I don't like the hearing instruments or realize I need something better?

Hearing instruments are sold with a minimum 30 day trial period. The Advanced Group of Clinics offers a 60 day trial period with flexibility if required. You can return or
exchange your hearing instruments any time within the trial period. See pricing questions
above for return fees.

Short-term Follow-up Question - How many appointments will I require after the initial fitting?

The number of appointments will vary depending on your situation. It could be as few as one follow-up appointment or as many as ten. Our clinicians are available to guide you through this process and encourage you to return for subsequent appointments until you are satisfied. It is strongly recommended that you have at least one follow-up appointment 2 weeks following the initial fitting. If at that point you are happy with the hearing instruments performance and you are not experiencing any difficulty with care and maintenance of the instruments, then you may not require another appointment for 6
months. However, the short-term follow-up appointments should be utilized to ensure that you are satisfied with your new instruments and that they are "fine-tuned" optimally for your particular listening situations.

Short-term Follow-up Question - In the past I have required many appointments to get the correct fit and settings in my hearing instruments. Is that normal?

Many factors influence the degree of difficulty for a quality fitting. The first item
requiring fine detail is the ear impression. If the impression is not adequate, it may result in a poorly fitting hearing instrument. After that, a small percentage of people experience movement in the hearing instrument while talking or chewing. Expect an in office modification or a remake of the earmold for this problem. Other issues can arise from the
settings in the hearing instruments. Usually the REM or Speech Mapping can solve amplification issues. This is why Advanced Hearing Aid Clinic audiologists perform this measurement during the fitting appointment. It should be noted that only audiologists are regulated by a college and require an REM or similar verification method to be performed on every hearing instrument fitting.

Long-term Follow-up Question - What is the warranty on hearing instruments?

At The Advanced Group of Clinics, most hearing instruments come with a three year repair warranty and 1 year loss and damage warranty (a small deductible will apply). The repair warranty ensures that there are no charges to repair or replace (if necessary) a manufacturer's defective product. The loss and damage warranty allows a one-time replacement for loss or accidental damage beyond repair of your hearing instrument.

Long-term Follow-up Question - What services are included with the cost of hearing instruments?

Advanced Hearing Aid Clinic includes "Advanced Care" for 3 years at no charge with
the exception of a Loss and Damage, where there is an applicable fee.

Long-term Follow-up Question - What is "Advanced Care"?

"Advanced Care" is a comprehensive service package. It includes annual hearing reassessments, reprogramming of your hearing instruments as needed, verification (REM's), clean and check of your hearing instruments on a quarterly basis (or more often if required), counseling and small parts replacements such as earhooks, battery doors and wax filters.