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…

Read More
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…

Read More
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…

Read More
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…

Read More

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…

Read More

Audiology Patient Choice Act picks up momentum, as AAA adds its endorsement

  By David H. Kirkwood LEXINGTON, KY—Support is growing rapidly for the Audiology Patient Choice Act (HR 5304), ambitious federal legislation initiated by the Academy of Doctors of Audiology (ADA) and introduced into the House of Representatives last July. If enacted, the measure would provide Medicare patients direct access to audiologists and would grant audiologists…

Read More

CMS backs down; will preserve Medicare coverage of bone-anchored hearing systems

By David H. Kirkwood WASHINGTON, DC—Responding to a broad-based national campaign by manufacturers, hearing care providers, and consumer advocates, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced on October 31 that it had reversed its position and would not end Medicare coverage of auditory osseointegrated implants (AOIs). As previously reported on this blog, CMS…

Read More

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…

Read More

CMS plans to end Medicare coverage of bone-anchored hearing systems

By David H. Kirkwood   This post was updated on July 31. CENTENNIAL, CO—People with hearing loss have long complained that Medicare doesn’t cover the cost of hearing aids. Now, older Americans who need help with their hearing face the loss of coverage for another type of treatment, osseo-integrated (or bone-anchored) devices, such as the Cochlear™…

Read More

Audiology organizations clash over federal legislative strategies

This post was updated on June 27. By David H. Kirkwood WASHINGTON, DC—The major professional organizations in audiology are more divided now than ever over which federal legislation will best support their members’ ability to serve Medicare beneficiaries. In past years, the American Academy of Audiology (AAA), the Academy of Doctors of Audiology (ADA), and,…

Read More