Assemblyman Will Barclay (R,C,I-Pulaski) today announced that he has sponsored Assembly bill A1890, which will assist individuals who suffer from hearing loss with the cost of hearing aids. The beginning of October was declared Hearing Aid Awareness Week to provide awareness and educate consumers about the available technology to treat the problem of hearing loss. This bill intends to give individuals tax credits every five years worth up to $500 for the purchase of each hearing aid.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“Many New Yorkers can not afford hearing aids even though hearing loss can be treated with hearing aidsÃ¢â‚¬Â, said Barclay. Ã¢â‚¬Å“With the average cost of hearing aids as high as $1,400 each, this bill lowers that expense substantially, and makes hearing aids more accessible.Ã¢â‚¬Â
It is currently estimated that 28 million people in the United States have some form of hearing loss, one million of whom are children. Although 95% of those afflicted with hearing loss could be successfully treated with hearing aids, only 22% actually use them. This could be due in part to the fact that forty percent of individuals with hearing loss have incomes under $30,000 a year.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“It is my hope that this bill will be a step in the right direction toward ensuring that New Yorkers who suffer from hearing loss can afford to be properly treated,Ã¢â‚¬Â concluded Barclay.