(a)(1) Every individual or group health insurance contract, or every individual or group hospital or medical expense insurance policy, plan, or group policy delivered, issued for delivery, or renewed in this state on or after January 1, 2006, shall provide coverage for one thousand five hundred dollars ($1,500) per individual hearing aid, per ear, every three (3) years for anyone under the age of nineteen (19) years, and shall provide coverage for seven hundred dollars ($700) per individual hearing aid, per ear, every three (3) years for anyone of the age of nineteen (19) years and older.
Terms Used In Rhode Island General Laws 27-18-60. Hearing aids
- provider: means a health care professional or a health care facility. See Rhode Island General Laws 27-18-1.1
(2) Every group health insurance contract or group hospital or medical expense insurance policy, plan, or group policy delivered, issued for delivery, or renewed in this state on or after January 1, 2006, shall provide, as an optional rider, additional hearing aid coverage. Provided, the provisions of this paragraph shall not apply to contracts, plans, or group policies subject to the small employer health insurance availability act, chapter 50 of this title.
(b) For the purposes of this section:
(1) “Hearing aid” means any nonexperimental, wearable instrument or device designed for the ear and offered for the purpose of aiding or compensating for impaired human hearing, but excluding batteries, cords, and other assistive listening devices, including, but not limited to FM systems.
(c) It shall remain within the sole discretion of the accident and sickness insurer as to the provider of hearing aids with which they choose to contract. Reimbursement shall be provided according to the respective principles and policies of the accident and sickness insurer. Nothing contained in this section precludes the accident and sickness insurer from conducting managed care, medical necessity, or utilization review.
(d) This section does not apply to insurance coverage providing benefits for: (1) hospital confinement indemnity; (2) disability income; (3) accident only; (4) long term care; (5) Medicare supplement; (6) limited benefit health; (7) specified diseased indemnity; (8) sickness of bodily injury or death by accident or both; (9) and other limited benefit policies.
(P.L. 2000, ch. 461, § 1; P.L. 2004, ch. 539, § 1; P.L. 2004, ch. 550, § 1; P.L. 2005, ch. 374, § 5; P.L. 2005, ch. 395, § 1; P.L. 2006, ch. 595, § 1; P.L. 2006, ch. 614, § 1.)