hi HealthInnovations’ hearing test: Will it steer patients to or away from hearing professionals?

 By David H. Kirkwood MINNETONKA, MN—Hearing care providers have long believed that a recommendation from a primary-care physician (PCP) is one of the most compelling factors in motivating people to get help for their hearing loss. That’s why for years the Hearing Industries Association (HIA) marketed to GPs, family practitioners, and internal medicine physicians, urging…

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Institute of Medicine panel seeks ways to make hearing care more accessible and affordable

By David H. Kirkwood WASHINGTON, DC—As part of an ambitious, two-year study to identify ways to make hearing health care (HHC) for adults more accessible and affordable, a 13-member ad hoc committee of the Institute of Medicine (IOM) will hold a daylong open session on Monday, April 27. IOM, the health arm of the National…

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HHTM Exclusive: Findings from new MarkeTrak study show greater hearing aid use, satisfaction

    By David H. Kirkwood WASHINGTON, DC–The portion of Americans with self-reported hearing difficulty who own hearing aids has increased to 30.2% (from 24.8% in 2008), and the satisfaction rate with hearing aids has grown to 81% from 74%, according to the MarkeTrak 9 survey conducted last fall by Az Marketing Research with Online…

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Hearing Industries Association leads an all-out effort for hearing aid tax credit

WASHINGTON, DC—When the Hearing Industries Association (HIA) holds both its biennial Hearing on the Hill and its annual meeting here this week, the trade association will be focused on passage of the Hearing Aid Tax Credit bill (S. 315). Although similar legislation introduced in the past several sessions of Congress has never been enacted despite…

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Audiologists, dispensers, and consumers all have a stake in bills before Congress

By David H. Kirkwood WASHINGTON, DC—After taking two months off to campaign for re-election, the 113rd Congress will finally return to Washington sometime in November for a brief lame duck session. There it will find a slew of bills related to hearing care waiting for them. Barring a miracle, this Congress, which has enacted less…

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New study finds that when hearing loss goes untreated, the cost is astronomical

By David H. Kirkwood LONDON–A report issued July 9 by the British Commission on Hearing Loss further confirms the enormous economic toll that untreated hearing loss takes on those with the condition–as well as the rest of society. It also explores why in the United Kingdom, where hearing aids are free, only 20% of the…

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Regarding noise on the job, a chasm separates employees and employers

  POMONA, CA—How much of the day are American workers exposed to loud noise—loud enough that someone in their workplace has to raise his or her voice to be heard? The answer to that depends on whom you ask—employees or employers. When Pomona-based EPIC (Ear Professionals International Corporation) Hearing Healthcare commissioned a company to ask…

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FDA’s proposed new PSAP policy draws mixed response, but mostly opposed

  By David H. Kirkwood SILVER SPRING, MD–The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has  more than 100, highly diverse, public comments to consider in deciding if it should implement or rethink a proposed new guidance document that it issued on November 7. The document, drafted by the Ear, Nose, and Throat Devices Branch of…

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Measure would provide hearing aid coverage for Ohio children and adults

COLUMBUS—The Ohio legislature is considering a bill that would make Ohio only the fourth state in the nation to require health insurance companies to include hearing aids as part of their basic health coverage for people of all ages. Seventeen states require that health insurance benefits plans pay for hearing aids for children, but only…

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Hearing aid dispensing groups back new FDA restrictions on PSAPs; HLAA does not

  The following post was originally published on February 5 and updated on February 6. By David H. Kirkwood ROCKVILLE, MD–Three more organizations concerned with hearing submitted comments to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) this week on the agency’s proposed guidance document, which would tighten existing restrictions on the marketing of personal sound amplification products…

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