Academy Opposes Florida Legislation to Remove Audiological Evaluation Prior to Issuance of Hearing Aid

Academy Opposes Florida Legislation to Remove Audiological Evaluation Prior to Issuance of Hearing Aid

February 19, 2021 Government Relations News

The American Academy of Audiology has expressed its opposition to Florida legislation that would remove the current state requirement that individuals receive evaluation and testing by a licensed audiologist and instead allow individuals simply to sign a waiver prior to receiving a hearing aid.

This legislation was introduced and very quickly amended into SB 700—a large telehealth bill. The text of this provision appears as Amendment # 302884 in SB 700. 

The Academy expressed concern that the removal of a professional evaluation is contrary to the best interest of patients with hearing loss, particularly those who may require medical or surgical treatment beyond hearing aids. The existing Florida statutory language, requiring appropriate evaluation from a licensed audiologist, protects consumers. The Academy maintains that professional evaluation by a licensed audiologist is needed to determine the type and degree of hearing loss and when further medical treatment is warranted.

The Academy is working closely with the Florida Academy of Audiology, and members in Florida, to monitor the legislation and to provide support as needed. A copy of the letter of opposition from the Academy is available here. The Academy urges members across all states to be vigilant about other legislation (and amendments) that could seek to replace the professional evaluation with an individual waiver.

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