Press Release Dated 2/27/2015


Eugene Hearing & Speech Temporarily Closes its Doors

Eugene, Oregon---After 60 years of service to the community, Eugene Hearing & Speech Center will temporarily close its doors today and will expect to re-emerge after it restructures its operations and service offerings to those with speech and audiology needs.

“After careful consideration, the board of directors believes it is the right time to take a step back to evaluate the Center’s business model and then restructure our business to better meet the needs of our patients and the community,” said Michael Rodeen, chairman of the volunteer Eugene Hearing & Speech Center’s Board of Directors. “In the meantime, patients are being referred to other providers to ensure they receive the care and services they need and deserve.”

In 2014, Eugene Hearing & Speech served more than 6,000 patients, including 4,700 low income infants, children and adults, but rising expenses, limited rates from insurers and Medicare, and lower cost options for hearing aids have contributed to the Center’s current position.

“Some big box retailers now sell hearing aids to the public at a lower cost than the Eugene Hearing & Speech Center can buy them from the manufacturer,” said Rodeen, who has been a Eugene Hearing & Speech Center patient for more than 40 years. “In addition, healthcare billing has become complex and expensive, requiring an infrastructure that is beyond the capacity of a small nonprofit entity providing a limited scope of medical services.”

As an example, Rodeen says a basic Electronic Medical Records Software Program, which is required to accept Medicare payments, costs more than $100,000, in addition to monthly costs of more than a $1,000 per month. These expenses, and others have hurt the Eugene Hearing & Speech Center’s ability to generate enough cash to cover charitable services and expenses.


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