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Lost / Damaged Hearing Aid Policy

Information for patients, carers and relatives

NHS hearing aids are property of the NHS and are provided without charge to the patient, either as a single hearing aid or as a pair. There is a charge to replace hearing aids that have been lost or damaged due to negligence, with some specific exemptions. The charges for hearing aids lost or damaged due to negligence (as outlined below) is a flat rate of £65 for one hearing aid and £130 for two, regardless of whether it is the first loss or not.

What is negligence?

  • Damage from home appliances such as washing machines or microwaves
  • Poor or inappropriate cleaning that has caused irreparable damage
  • Exposure to high amount of moisture from showers, baths or swimming
  • Poor storage of the aid(s) leading to rust, melting case, teeth marks or other physical damage

Please contact the Hearing Aid Department if you lose your hearing aid. Call 01582 497154 or email

To pay for Lost/Damaged Aids over the phone, please telephone the Cashiers Office on 01582 497257.

Card payment is preferred and will be taken before the replacement aid is issued. Cash or cheques are also accepted at the Cashiers Office in the main hospital.  Cheques can be made payable to: Bedfordshire Hospitals NHS Trust

 Please note, refunds will not be provided for hearing aids found after replacements have been issued.

What are the exemptions to these charges?

Patients will not be charged if they are:

  • Patients whose lost hearing aid is older than 5 years
  • Children and Young people under 18 years of age
  • Hospital Patients or those in a Care Home – A hearing aid / sound therapy device lost as a result of being a hospital inpatient may be charges to the hospital ward or care home.
  • Patients not capable of looking after themselves – Patients with severe developmental delay, severe physical or psychological problems, severe dementia or who are under the mental care act
  • Patients receiving a Means Tested Benefit – The charge should be waived on production of written evidence of benefit
  • Victims of Crime of house theft or mugging and the Hearing Aid /sound therapy device is stolen – A crime number relating to the reported theft to the police of the hearing aid / sound therapy device is required
  • Registered Blind / significantly visually impaired

In circumstances where multiple hearing aids have been lost you may still be liable for the charge, even if one of the above exemptions apply.

Means tested benefits

Patients are exempt from paying their lost hearing aid charges if on the following Benefits.

Proof of benefit must be shown, either by letter or bank statement.

  • Universal Credit
  • Pension Credit
  • Tax Credits (Child Tax Credit and Working Tax Credit)
  • Council Tax Support
  • Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance
  • Income-related Employment and Support Allowance
  • Income Support
  • Housing Benefit.

Other exemptions

  • Patients in receipt of a war pension for Hearing Loss