maine lepage veto hearing aid bill

Maine’s Governor Vetoes Bipartisan Hearing Aid Bill

AUGUSTA, MAINE — Last year, a state legislator in Maine proposed a bill the state require insurance plans to cover hearing aids for people of all ages. The legislation, proposed by Representative Jim Handy, a Democrat from Lewiston, directs insurance plans to provide coverage for at least $3,000 per hearing aid to individuals that need…

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hearing aid cost healthcare

New Study Delves into Link Between Hearing Aid Use and Healthcare Costs

As members of AAA debate the merits of direct access legislation, a new study, published online April 26 at JAMA-Otolaryngology is apt to capture the attention of Medicare policymakers. Elham Mahmoudi and colleagues at the University of Michigan, using data from the 2013-2014 Medical Expenditure Panel Survey, evaluated hearing aid use among 1336 adults, aged…

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audiology patient choice act introduced senate

Legislation Introduced to Improve Access to Hearing Health Care Services

WASHINGTON, DC — United States Senators Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and Rand Paul (R-Ky.) today introduced the Audiology Patient Choice Act, a bipartisan bill that ensures seniors and people with disabilities on Medicare have access to a full range of hearing and balance health care services provided by licensed audiologists. A June 2016 report by the…

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hearing loss task force new jersey

New Jersey Lawmakers Approve Task Force to Study Hearing Loss Services

TRENTON, NEW JERSEY — Lawmakers in the New Jersey state Assembly approved a proposal late last week to establish a task force to examine state services and support offered to residents that are deaf and hard of hearing. The measure had been previously approved by the state Senate this summer and will now need the…

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insurance coverage for hearing aids lawsuit

Class Action Lawsuit Alleges Health Insurers Discriminate by Not Covering Hearing Aids; Outcome Could Set National Precedent

SEATTLE, WASHINGTON — According to a report in the Yakima Herald, a Seattle law firm has filed suit against two health insurance companies due to the companies not covering treatment for hearing loss. The suit alleges that the exclusion of hearing loss treatment constitutes illegal discrimination under federal law. The outcome of the case could…

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trump signs otc hearing aid fda bill

It’s Official: President Trump Signs OTC Hearing Aid Legislation into Law

WASHINGTON, DC — On Friday, August 18, President Trump signed the FDA Reauthorization Act into Law. Within the FDA legislation, a provision was included that directs the FDA to develop a category of over-the-counter (OTC) hearing aids for adults with mild to moderate hearing loss. After passing in the Senate earlier this month by a vote…

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congress otc hearing aid legislation

UPDATE: OTC Hearing Aid Legislation: Where Are We Now?

Editor’s Note: On August 3, 2017, the US Senate passed the Over the Counter Act of 2017. The legislation, having already passed in the House, will now head to the president’s desk to be signed into law.   In November 2016, citing recommendations from the groundbreaking PCAST and NAS reports on hearing aid accessibility and affordability,…

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gun silencer

After Passage of Tennessee Hearing Protection Act, Residents Now Allowed to Use Firearm Silencers

CHATTANOOGA, TENNESSEE — The Tennessee Hearing Protection Act of 2017 officially went into effect on July 1st, after passing through the state legislature this year. No longer banned in the state, Tennesseans can now use firearm suppressors (silencers) on their guns. Backers of the legislation say its going to help protect the hearing of hunters…

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medicare hearing aid coverage

Policy Experts Float Idea of Medicare Coverage for Hearing Services

Since the inception of the program, some 50 years ago, Medicare has excluded coverage for dental, vision and hearing services. The program has directly contributed to sharp declines in mortality and longer life expectancy for those aged 65 and older. Today, however, given the linkage between increased costs and poorer overall health and disorders related…

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otc hearing aid debate

OTC Device Standards & Regulations Hotly Debated at June 9th NASEM Meeting

By several accounts NASEM’s hearing health care report dissemination meeting, held June 9th in Washington, DC, was well attended and full of lively discussion on a range of issues related to accessible and affordable hearing care. According to a few of the meeting participants, the creation by the FDA of an over-the-counter (OTC) category of…

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