Utah Children Need Your Used Hearing Aids

Ruzanna Harutyunyan's picture

For the 150 children born in Utah each year with hearing problems, hearing aids are critical to the normal development of speech. You can help many of these children by donating used hearing aids to the Utah Department of Health (UDOH) Hearing Aid Recycling Program (HARP).

"Many of the families we help are stuck between being able to afford hearing aids for their new baby and qualifying for financial assistance," said UDOH Hearing, Speech and Vision Services director Richard Harward, Au.D. "If a family can pay for a new hearing aid, they probably can't qualify for Medicaid, so it's truly being caught between a rock and hard place for them."


Hearing aids are expensive and most insurance plans don't cover the cost, which can range from $1,000 to $3,000 and more, depending on features and power requirements.

The HARP Program takes in used devices and reconditions those that are in good shape. The rest are sold for salvage or sent to the manufacturer for credit toward the purchase of new hearing aids. HARP does not compete with private hearing aid providers or duplicate services that are already available to families.

Children with hearing loss who don't get help right away may not be able to develop speech normally and are more likely to perform poorly in school," said Dr. Harward. "You'd be amazed what we can do with used hearing aids, and the families we are able to help are so grateful," he added.