For reprint by GWAAR Legal Services Team
The Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS) announced an increase in hearing aid assistance (HAA) funding through the Telecommunications Assistance Program (TAP). TAP HAA provides funding toward the purchase of new and refurbished hearing aids and cochlear implant external processors to increase the efficiency and use of telecommunications devices for distance communications. HAA can provide up to $1,500 towards the cost of a telecoil or Bluetooth-enabled hearing aid or cochlear implant external processor. HAA is available to eligible applicants with an out-of-pocket expense and can be combined with additional benefits or discounts available through applicant insurance or supplemental plans.
Funding is limited and is on a first-come, first-served basis. Applicants must meet the TAP program eligibility requirements. Specifically, applicants must:
- Be a Wisconsin resident
- Meet income eligibility guidelines ($25,760 yearly taxable income for single, $34,840 yearly taxable income for a couple)
- Not applying for TEPA, Copay, or TAP+
- Purchase equipment through a certified audiologist or licensed hearing aid provider
- Submit a quote for a hearing aid or cochlear implant external processor (must have a telecoil or Bluetooth program enabled specified on quote)
- Submit a current completed hearing loss certification form, signed by a certified audiologist or licensed hearing aid provider within the past six months
- Not be receiving Medical Assistance, like BadgerCare Plus or Medicaid
More information can be found online on the Wisconsin Department of Health Services at www.dhs.wisconsin.gov and search for TAP.
HAA vouchers will be mailed to the applicant or the applicant’s legal representative to be redeemed with an approved vendor. These vouchers will serve as a credit towards the total purchase price.
HAA funding is not intended to cover costs associated with hearing exams, other clinical or office expenses, medical expenses, or past purchase amounts. In addition, the following items are not covered: over-the-counter (OTC) hearing aids, mail-order hearing aids, personal sound amplification products (PSAP) like pocket talkers, online testing documentation, battery replacements, hearing aid or external processor repairs, non-certified or unlicensed providers, and providers not approved or active as a vendor in DHS’s accounts payable system.
If you have any questions or need assistance, please contact the TAP Program Coordination via email at email@example.com or call (608) 267-7195.