The Academy welcomes Melissa Sinden as our senior director of government relations (effective February 2). Having served the American Chiropractic Association, Sinden’s experience spans both legislative and regulatory affairs. A graduate of University of Missouri-Columbia, she has a political science degree and speaks Italian as a second language. In her own words, “I'm thrilled to be joining the audiology team at such an exciting time both within the Academy and in the political arena. I have great expectations for what we will be able to accomplish.”
The American Academy of Audiology has been awarded a seat on the American Medical Association (AMA) Current Procedural Terminology/Health Care Professionals Advisory Committee (CPT/HCPAC). The CPT/HCPAC is a panel of specialty societies charged with facilitating the review and development of applications for CPT codes used by qualified non-physician health care professionals.
Academy Announces Introduction of Direct Access Legislation
(Washington, DC – June 25, 2009) — The American Academy of Audiology is pleased to announce the introduction of H.R. 3024, the Medicare Hearing Health Care Enhancement Act of 2009 in the 111th Congress. This bill is identical to H.R. 1665 from last Congress and Congressman Mike Ross (D-AR) has taken the lead again this session, along with 13 original cosponsors. In the 110th Congress, H.R. 1665 garnered 108 cosponsors.
NPI and Audiology: An Interview with Deb Abel, AuD, Director of Reimbursement, American Academy of Audiology
American Academy of Audiology
Interview with Deb Abel AuD
Director of Reimbursement
American Academy of Audiology
June 19, 2008
Academy/Beck:Hi, Deb. Thanks for your time today. In your position as the director of reimbursement at the Academy, you're right in the middle of the states and the feds, and the practicing audiologists across the United States?
The Internet continues to rapidly change the way we communicate. To assure disabled people have equal access to innovative broadband-based Internet technologies, Representative Ed Markey (D-MA), chairman of the House Subcommittee on Telecommunications, and Representative Heather Wilson (R-NM) have co-sponsored the new 21st Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act, which amends the Communications Act and closes gaps in previous legislation.
Jane Zhang reported the findings of a recent Senate investigation in the Wall Street Journal (July 9, 2008). Zhang reported approximately one-half million claims had been filed under the names of approximately 17,000 dead physicians. These fraudulent claims were paid by Medicare, totaling nearly $100 million between 2000 and 2007. Zhang noted the amount of dollars Medicare spent could actually be greater, as the claims were only counted as of one year after the physicians died.
Robert Pear reported (July 13, 2008, New York Times) the previously scheduled cut in Medicare payments (totaling some 10.6%) has been blocked by the U.S. Congress (see HR # 6331) and a majority voice vote in the U.S. Senate. Congressman Greg Walden (Republican, Oregon) is the co-chair of the bipartisan House Rural Healthcare Coalition. Congressman Walden says that if the cuts had gone through, physicians would be forced to lose money on the care they provide, or turn patients away. As of this moment, the previously scheduled payment cuts will be suspended for 18 months.