Tuesday, November 17, 2009

EqualityCare inquiry

I sent an inquiry to the Wyoming EqualityCare about their coverage for cochlear implants last Friday... Today I got a response from them.

Dear Client,

This correspondence is in response to your recent Ask EqualityCare submission. Wyoming EqualityCare records indicate that the prior authorization for cochlear implants was denied as the client is able to communicate through speech. In order for a prior authorization to be approved for clients over the age of 21, the client must be unable to communicate through speech or other means to make their medical or basic needs known. The documentation that was submitted to Wyoming EqualityCare states that this is not the case. If you believe this is incorrect, please contact Rocky Mountain Ear Center.

If you have any additional questions, please contact ACS Client Relations at ------------


ACS, Inc.

Client Relations

I have forwarded this email on to Advanced Bionics. This is just not right at all, how can they factor in how well one communicates, despite how badly they hear? Even FDA guidelines doesn't factor in communication skills, just hearing loss and how POORLY the person hears speech with hearing aids. This is an outrage!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Medicaid's reasoning...

Just got a reply back from Rocky Mountain Ear Center on why Medicaid/Wyoming EqualityCare denied the cochlear implant.

Um... how messed up is that? So I have good speech and I communicate orally, that doesn't mean I shouldn't get an implant. If only they could actually SEE how I function with the little hearing I've got in the right ear. I can't even understand my own MOTHER without facing her. I have to lipread everyone in order to make sense of what they're saying, I need subtitles/captions on at all times, I need all the visual support I can get! I can barely use the phone these days, and always struggle to make sense of what my own mother is saying over the phone. She constantly has to repeat what she says on the phone for me to get it. I'm astounded over their reasoning, I really am. So I got lucky with having good speech, thanks to the deaf school and a dedicated speech therapist working with me on my speech. I'm lucky I can still communicate via speech, but I need all the visual support I can get when it comes to understanding what the other person is saying. And if I'm out at a restaurant or noisy situation, communication is pretty much... zip, even with lipreading I just can't understand crap. I can only lipread if I can hear what is being said, and I can hear if I can SEE what is being said, so I'm screwed either way. Come on Equality Care, seriously. That's a really stupid reason to deny the cochlear implant to someone who has 1 fully deaf ear and 1 that has about oh 20% hearing and can barely get by with a powerful hearing aid. Golly.

Rocky Mountain asked me if I wanted OMS Insurance or Advanced Bionics to do the appealing. I told her to send the information on to Advanced Bionics. We'll see how things go. Seriously.. just... wow.

Monday, November 9, 2009


Medicaid has denied the cochlear implant request. Rocky Mountain Cochlear Implant Center will send the information on to OMS Insurance Support, and OMS will appeal, and hopefully work their magic. I might even get in contact with the Let Them Hear Foundation and see if they can be of any support as well.

Edit: LTHF is currently not accepting any appeal requests, so I'll just have to rely on OMS at this time. That's fine with me though. Also contacted Advanced Bionic's insurance support as well, to see if they could be of any help.