| November 2019 Update: Due to the high level of demand the VHF / British Legion funding has now ceased. However, we still offer discount to those who have the Defence Discount Service's Defence Privilege Card. To find out more or for expert advice - call our audiologist today on 0800 567 7621
This veterans hearing fund for free hearing aids is a scheme to provide free hearing aids for war veterans is called the Veterans Hearing Fund. You might have also heard it called the following: "Veterans hearing fund Royal British Legion", "British Legion veterans hearing fund" or the "BLV hearing fund".
How can I get a free veterans hearing aid?
In the past, some people have found applying to the Veterans Hearing Fund for the money they need for veterans hearing aid supplies to be a little difficult. But please do not let that put you off from getting the hearing aids and equipment that you are entitled to, and that can make such a huge difference to your life and well-being.
Here at Hearing Aid UK, we have vast experience in providing veteran hearing aid assistance. We have helped many deserving veterans get free hearing aids from the Veterans Hearing Fund, quite simply by taking the hassle out of the application for them.
Our experience means that all you need to do is to contact our knowledgeable team and we will handle the entire application process on your behalf, meaning that you can get the free veterans hearing aids that you need, without any fuss or bother. Give us a call on 0800 567 7621 and we can talk you through your options and get your application started today.
How does the Veterans Hearing Fund work?
The Royal British Legion administers the fund, which is financed by HM Treasury. The Veterans Hearing Fund is designed to provide veterans’ hearing aid supplies, for any hearing loss needs that cannot be administered through statutory services such as the NHS.
Why are hearing aids required for war veterans?
Especially before the advent of modern ear defenders, many military personnel suffered from repeated exposure to very loud noises from gunshots and other artillery fires. Known as Noise-Induced Hearing Loss, retired veterans often require hearing aid assistance due to this damage caused to the functioning of the ear, often resulting in severe tinnitus and the inability to hear high-frequency noises.
Due to budgetary issues, the hearing aids provided by the NHS tend to be some of the least powerful and less technologically advanced available. Whereas these may be sufficient for people with mild hearing loss who live quiet lifestyles in un-challenging sonic environments, hearing aids for war veterans tend to need to be much more powerful and with a higher level of technological features to combat their specific Noise-Induced Hearing Loss.
Appropriate veterans hearing aid supplies tend to not only include the more premium ranges of hearing aids but also a number of associated hearing aid accessories such as devices to stream audio from your phone, TV or radio directly to your hearing aids, remote controls and extra microphones. These can make a significant difference to veterans' hearing and wellbeing but are generally not provided via the NHS.
Can you use your war pension for hearing aids?
If you are a retired veteran requiring hearing aid assistance and are in receipt of a war pension, you will still be eligible for the Veterans Hearing Fund, as your war pension is designed to cover usual living costs, not the specialist requirements of service induced disabilities.
Veterans hearing aids eligibility
To be eligible for veterans hearing aid assistance through the Veterans Hearing Fund, you must be a retired military veteran and be able to prove that your hearing loss was incurred as a result of your military service.
The veterans' administration hearing aid program is open to retired veterans requiring hearing aid assistance who meet any of the following criteria:
Applications to the Veterans Hearing Fund are made to the Royal British Legion. It is a 2 step process, but don’t worry, we will handle the entire process on your behalf.
Stage 1 – Initial application: "Veterans hearing fund application form"
We will work with you to complete the application form and submit this along with proof of your eligibility and the appropriate audiometry results from your service medical records to the Veterans Hearing Fund.
If your application is judged to be eligible for veterans hearing aid assistance from the Veterans Hearing Fund you will then be sent a second stage application form.
Stage 2 – Audiological Assessment
We will then arrange a convenient appointment with one of HearingAid.org.uk’s UK wide network of expert audiologists and they will conduct a thorough audiological examination and then recommend the best hearing aid for you. They will complete the second stage form and return it, along with the audiometry results, to the Royal British Legion who will assess whether these veterans hearing aid supplies will help to improve your life.
If approved the Veterans Hearing Fund will then pay for your hearing aids and any accessories.
What can the Veterans Hearing Fund provide?
Retired veterans may need hearing aid assistance for a number of hearing loss requirements. Normally veteran's hearing loss is due to Noise-Induced Hearing Loss but this can present in different ways in different veterans.
Therefore the veterans' administration hearing aid brands include all of those currently available on the market, rather than just being limited to those available on the NHS. As we have also mentioned the Veterans Hearing Fund can provide those extra hearing aid accessories that can make such a difference to a veteran's life.
Additionally, the veterans hearing aids program can also offer to fund for therapies such as lip-reading training if it can be judged to be beneficial to the veterans' wellbeing.
There are many benefits to the Veterans Hearing Fund providing hearing aids for war veterans. These include:
Veterans hearing aids are free
Veterans' hearing aid supplies are usually significantly better than those available on the NHS provides funding for veterans' hearing aid accessories and peripheral therapies such as lip-reading training.
You can use your choice of audiologists to assess your hearing and make their recommendation of hearing aids for war veterans. Using HearingAid.org.uk means that you will not only have access to a network of expert local audiologists but you can also guarantee a low price, thus leaving more of the fund remaining to help other worthy veterans.
How are veterans hearing aids provided for free?
The cost of the Veterans Hearing Fund is covered by HM Treasury (not the British Legion as is often mistakenly understood), using money gained from LIBOR fines.
LIBOR fines are those that were charged to many banks and financial institutions who were discovered to have been fixing the London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR). This is is the interest rate used by banks when lending to one another.
Many bankers were found to be artificially keeping the LIBOR low to illegally increase their profits. Some of the revenue from the fines imposed by HM Treasury when this was discovered was used to create the Veterans Hearing Fund.
As well as the Veterans Hearing Fund can I claim veterans hearing loss compensation?
For some veterans, the circumstances of their hearing loss could mean that they are eligible for veterans hearing loss compensation. However, this would be claimed completely separately from applying to the Veterans Hearing Fund. There are a number of companies that specialise in veterans hearing loss claims and can provide information about veterans affairs hearing loss forms and veterans affairs hearing loss calculators.
If you are simply looking for a way of funding your hearing aids it may be quicker, simpler and possibly more effective to apply to the Veterans Hearing Fund, rather than investigating veterans' hearing loss compensation.
To find out more about how the Veterans Hearing Fund provides free hearing aids for war veterans and about other general retired veterans hearing assistance, contact Hearing Aid UK today. Our expert team is highly knowledgeable about veterans' hearing loss and can advise you on your options before assisting you with your eligibility assessment.
We can then put you in touch with one of our network of qualified audiologists who will complete a thorough audiometric examination before recommending the best hearing aid for your veteran's hearing loss.
We can support you and your hearing care locally
If you would like to ask any questions regarding this article or other hearing healthcare issues - please call us free on 0800 567 7621 to speak with an audiologist.
Read Next: Hearing Loss Facts
When we refer to a product as 'New', we mean that the product is new to the market.
When we refer to a product as 'Superseded', we mean that there is a newer range available which replaces and improves on this product.
When we refer to a product as an 'Older Model', we mean that it is has been superseded by at least two more recent hearing aid ranges.