What Is The Difference Between An Audiologist And A Hearing Instrument Specialist (HIS)?

There are a number of different hearing healthcare professionals available, but each has different education and training requirements. An audiologist and a hearing instrument specialist (HIS) are two of the most common professionals when seeking treatment for hearing loss. To better understand which professional is best for you, it’s important to distinguish the differences between the two.

An audiologist is trained to diagnose, treat and monitor disorders of the hearing and balance system. They are trained in anatomy and physiology, amplification devices, cochlear implants, electrophysiology, acoustics, psychophysics and auditory rehabilitation. Doctors of Audiology complete, at a minimum, an undergraduate and doctoral level degree in audiology, as well as a supervised fellowship prior to state licensure and national certification. This usually requires eight years of post-secondary education (four years of college and four years of graduate school). The graduate school years focus on the medical, diagnostic and rehabilitative aspects of hearing loss, hearing aids and the vestibular system. Upon completion of training, audiologists must also pass a national standardized examination in order to be eligible for state licensure. Continuing education requirements must be met in order for an audiologist to maintain state licensure. For individuals with hearing loss, auditory issues or balance problems, an audiologist is the most qualified professional to assist with diagnosis and treatment.

A hearing instrument specialist is licensed to perform audiometric testing to sell and fit hearing aids. In order to obtain a license, a HIS generally has to take a certification program in hearing aids, complete in-the-field training hours and pass an exam. Hearing instrument specialists are able to fit and repair hearing aids, however, they cannot diagnose a hearing loss.

I currently have hearing aids but can no longer get to my audiologist. Can you service my current hearing aids?

Yes, we work directly with top hearing aid manufacturing companies. Please contact us directly with any questions about your current hearing aids.

How are you able to offer competitive pricing for your hearing aids?

We pride ourselves in providing the latest technology in digital hearing aids at an affordable price. We minimize our cost of operations by eliminating the restraints of a traditional office, this allows for savings to be passed along to our patients.

How does hearing aid follow up work with your services?

We understand that in order for you to benefit from your hearing devices, routine maintenance and adjustments are necessary. We create a personalized follow up plan with each patient based on their individual needs.

Will hearing aids stop my hearing loss from getting worse?

Unfortunately, no. Even though today’s hearing aids are designed to accommodate a substantial range of hearing losses and help people hear better, they do not prevent further loss of hearing.

How long do hearing aids last?

The average lifespan of hearing aids is 4-5 years.

How frequent should I have my hearing tested?

If you have a hearing loss and are wearing hearing aids, we recommend having your hearing tested annually to monitor any decline to your hearing and to assure that the settings on your hearing aids are current.

Besides Offering Flexible In-Home Services, Do You Have In-Office Clinical Hours?

Yes, we have an office in Rahway, NJ. We have office hours every Wednesday from 9:15 AM – 1:15 PM and every Friday from 1 PM – 5 PM. In our office, we providing free hearing screenings for our new patients. As for in-home services, we are available every Monday, Tuesday, Thursday from 10 AM – 6 PM and every Saturday from 10 AM – 2 PM. Please contact us directly to schedule a house call or an in-office appointment.

Is There An Appointment Fee For A House Call Or An In-Office Consultation?

It all depends on whether we accept your insurance. We take most insurances, and we require either a script or referral from the patient’s physician in order to perform a diagnostic hearing test. If you have a copay, it will be collected at time of service. Services provided will be billed to your insurance company. For Medicare and other commercial plans, please contact our billing department and we will advise you of your benefits.

(For a list of insurances we accept, please visit our insurance & payments page)

There will be an appointment fee if we do not accept your insurance or your insurance do not provide any hearing aid benefits.  *$100 for the initial house call and $75 for each additional visit, and $75 for each in-office visit excluding the weekly free hearing screening appointments.  For a list of our audiological services, please visit our services page.

We offer affordable house call and in-office service plans for all patients but these plans are most beneficial for patients without an accepted insurance or have insurances without any hearing aid benefits. Please contact us for more information.

*Additional charges may apply for certain products and services.

Is there a trial period for the hearing aid(s)?

Yes. We offer a 30 calendar day trial from the date of purchase to return your hearing aid(s). Hearing aid(s) must be in the same condition, excluding normal wear and tear, in order to receive a full refund, less a nonrefundable fee of $75 per hearing aid.