Budget Hearing Centers, BHC, is committed to guiding you through the entire process of addressing your hearing health. Beginning with answering all your questions and providing individual consultation to find the specific hearing solution that is right for you. Hearing solutions focusing on your lifestyle and of course your budget.
BHC history dates back to 1986. Over the years Paul Thulin owner/hearing practitioner has tested over 3,000 clinic patients from Minnesota, North Dakota and Western Wisconsin. During his career he has fit over 2,500 satisfied patients with a myriad of hearing aid types and brands. Due to his own severe high frequency hearing loss he understands his patients concerns and can relate to them. He found initially committing to wearing hearing aids full time was difficult. That’s right, even though he worked with patients daily it was also a life changing decision for him also. Once the decision had been made he quickly discovered the extent of what he had been missing. Thulin commented, “if you take the first step like I did years ago, I am positive you won’t be sorry!”
BHC awards. During December of 2018 the Sun Newspapers and the residents of Edina, Minnesota awarded the Blue Ribbon Award to BHC for being the Best Hearing Practice. During December of 2017, the Sun Newspapers and the residents of Bloomington, Minnesota awarded BHC with the Blue Ribbon Best Practice Award. BHC was also privileged to be nominated by the Better Business Bureau for the Minnesota Ethics in Business Award during 2018. BHC has been a member and contributor to the International Hearing Society and the Minnesota Hearing Healthcare Providers.
The Mission of Budget Hearing Centers is provide patients with adult hearing deficiencies affordable pricing for major brand hearing aids. In addition BHC pledges to provide the most competent, ethical, and technologically advanced hearing healthcare services and aftercare. In doing so our focus is on showing each patient respect, patience, and empathy in order to foster open communication towards patient hearing concerns.
When a potential patient and their loved one comes in for a hearing consultation, a Practitioner will listen to each person’s direct or indirect hearing concerns. From that input the Practitioner will determine what the next step should be. Most appointments last two plus hours opposed to the traditional half or one hour review. BHC feels that a decision encompassing a life changing action should not be rushed and fully discussed by all.
1. Assessment: A Hearing Practitioner will go over with the patient a series of questions regarding medical and hearing history. These questions will focus upon potential reasons for a hearing loss such the taking of ototoxic drugs, childhood and adult illnesses, injuries, environment noise subjected to, genetics and any other factors that may have contributed to a potential hearing loss. Next each of the following steps gives the practitioner more data to determine if a patient will benefit from hearing aids or not. We believe in a conservative approach not in a sales approach. If the time is not right we will let the patient know, do save your money!
2. Visual Examination: A lighted instrument called a Video Otoscope will be used to examine patient’s ear canals and ear drums. The ear exam can be viewed on two large screen monitors. Patients are generally amazed when seeing the inside of each ear canal on screen for the first time. The hearing Practitioner will be looking for any issues before beginning the hearing test. If needed any wax blockages that will may hamper the hearing test will be removed. Color pictures for the patient’s file are most often taken.
3. Tone Test: Once the assessment questions and the otoscopic examination have been completed the actual hearing test will be next. A Practitioner will take the patient to a soundproof booth. Comfortable foam ear inserts are placed in each ear. When the test begins tones from a variety of low and high frequencies will be given to the patient. All that is needed is to push a button located on a handheld joystick when various frequency tones are heard. During the testing the Practitioner will complete a Pure Tone Test, a Mastoid Bone Conduction Test, a Non-Amplified Word Test, a Most Comfortable Listening Test, a Most Uncomfortable Listening Test, and Various Speech and Word Recognition Tests. The data from each segment of the hearing test will be used to determine the depth of the patient’s hearing loss if present, the measures needed to treat the loss and a cross test validation of all the hearing loss data.
4. Results: The findings from these tests will be plotted on a graph called an Audiogram. An Audiogram, above, is arranged with frequencies across the bottom and decibels levels down the side. The results show the relative ability of the right and left ears to hear various frequencies at specific decibel levels. The testing results are discussed and shown on a large screen TV monitor, giving patients a thorough understanding of the information. In addition tape from the video library is often by the Practitioner to further illustrate the findings.
5. Solution: BHC is an authorized dealer for all 8 major hearing aid brands thus has a wide range of solutions available. Impartial suggestions are always presented based upon the patient’s hearing loss findings, common environments, daily activities, historic hearing issues, family genetics and pros/cons of different hearing aid brands/products. Hearing Aid prices will also discussed. Patients are encouraged to take their time to think about what was discussed and if need-be compare BHC prices. Over 97% return to purchase from BHC after comparing pricing for like products.
Customers also bring in tests that have been given by another Practice. We will accept these accredited tests if they are, per FDA requirements, less than 6 months old. Remember whoever tests you always ask for a copy of the test. You are entitled to it based upon Federal Law (HIPAA).