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Benefits: Supporting Employees Through Expanded Health Coverage

About six years ago, Luke Eber, now a Strategic Sourcing manager on the downtown Northwestern Medicine campus, started working in Distribution Logistics at Northwestern Medicine Lake Forest Hospital.

At the time, he was new to the healthcare field and worked in the same building as the Audiology Department at the hospital. Crossing paths with audiologists was a common occurrence, and Eber, who lived with hearing loss, got more comfortable with the idea of using hearing aids.

Compassionate care, close to work

“There was never a doubt that my hearing was challenged,” says Eber, who had met with audiologists multiple times in the past but hadn’t followed through with getting hearing aids. Initially, he says, he was concerned with his reputation among colleagues and leaders. He thought that having hearing aids would come with a stigma that would be a barrier in his career.

After working at Lake Forest Hospital for several years, however, Eber’s attitude shifted.

“I knew that the environment of care here,” he says. “Northwestern Medicine is for everybody, no matter what the medical need is.”

So, in 2021, Eber made an appointment with one of our audiologists, who recommended a hearing aid device that would fit his lifestyle, including playing hockey. Putting the hearing aids on for that first time was a life-changing experience, he says.

Better benefits

Hearing aid devices are often not covered by insurance plans. This usually results in people needing to pay out of pocket for them. But as a result of employee feedback and our commitment to an inclusive workplace, we expanded health insurance coverage to include hearing aids. In addition, we recently enhanced our benefits to make it easier for single people and same-sex couples to access fertility treatments, such as IVF.

Now, Eber says the hearing aids have helped him feel less stressed and frustrated in his daily life, and he enjoys how innovative they are.

“They are legitimately a cool gadget,” he says. “They’re small, modern and integrate with everything.”

Putting our patients first means first supporting our team members – we strive to make sure that all our employees have what they need to feel supported and succeed in their roles. Learn more about the benefits you get when you join our teams at Northwestern Medicine.