Help Lochlain Hear

A little over a year ago, my nephew Lochlain failed his newborn hearing screening.  After several more tests, they determined that Lochlain is profoundly deaf and were able identify the cause of the hearing loss as Enlarged Vestibular Aqueduct (EVA). Jacob and Louise have spent the last year at appointments, undergoing tests, working with Birth to 3, having Lochlain fitted for hearing aids and then trying to keep them in.  After all the appropriate steps were taken, it was determined that Lochlain received little if any benefit from hearing aids and that he is a very strong candidate for cochlear implants. He was approved by his doctors for cochlear implant placement immediately after his first birthday (June 2017)
However, when preparations to schedule the surgery began Jacob and Louise were told that their insurance would NOT cover the implants (at $76K per ear) though they were deemed medically necessary for Lochlain!  They appealed multiple times with the insurance company, who is ALSO JACOB’S EMPLOYER, and were still denied coverage! 

Did you know that Wisconsin law requires health insurance to cover implants for children but because of a loophole less than 25% of the children who need them actually have them covered? For this reason, there are other ways families who can not afford to pay $76K per ear can get implants for much less or for free.  ***THIS IS NOT THE CASE WITH LOCHLAIN'S FAMILY WHO DOES NOT QUALIFY FOR THAT KIND OF ASSISTANCE***

To add to stressors, the hospital requires that the surgery be paid up front!  After pounding the ground to try to find any source for assistance, since $76K is not an amount many people can afford outright, the generous Dallas Hearing Foundation stepped up to help give Lochlain one cochlear implant at a fraction of the original cost.  This will require that Lochlain and his parents stay in Texas for several weeks for surgery and activation to be completed there. Follow up appointments to tweak the device and future speech and listening therapies with be completed in WI.

Lochlain has a right to hear and cochlear implantation is a relatively simple procedure that can give him that ability and completely affect the quality and outcome of this child’s life.

Many of you have asked how you can help, so we are asking our network of family and friends to help take one worry away.  If you are not in a position to donate perhaps you would be willing to help us by sharing this link.

Any money received will be put towards Lochlain’s cochlear implant surgery and various tests/procedures that have not been/will not be covered by insurance as well appointments to tune the implant and for travel expenses such as airfare and lodging.


We want to thank you in advance for any donations, shares, thoughts and prayers that come in as a result of this. It really means so much! Jacob and Louise will be happy to answer any questions you may have about Lochlain and the upcoming surgery so feel free to ask!

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  • Jill Carter 
    • $50 
    • 56 mos
  • S B 
    • $200 
    • 58 mos
  • Trev & Dre Boom 
    • $100 
    • 58 mos
  • Cynthia Albright 
    • $30 
    • 58 mos
  • Michael Oosten 
    • $25 
    • 58 mos
See all

Organizer and beneficiary

Jenny Sweeney 
Madison, WI
Louise Muldowney