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Hearing Aids (Insurance Cover)

Volume 19: debated on Tuesday 2 March 1982

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asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if the issue of a commercial hearing aid under the National Health Service to a handicapped child is conditional upon the parent taking out an insurance policy to cover its loss or damage; what instructions he has issued to hospitals in this matter; and if he will make a statement.

All hearing aids provided under the National Health Service are issued on free loan to patients; they remain Crown property and should not be insured. An insurance policy may, however, be taken out to cover the risk of incurring charges for non-accidental damage to an aid, since if an aid needs to be repaired or replaced because of an act or omission of the patient or—in the case of a child—of his parent, a charge may be made to recover part or the whole of the cost. The Department will shortly be issuing an information sheet to health authorities clarifying the position on the insurance of hearing aids provided under the National Health Service.