Criminal and Civil Liability Risks for Audiologists Who Accept Monetary Incentives (Such as Paid Conference Registration) in Exchange for the Purchase of Hearing Aids

Make the Medicare Audiologist Access Improvement Act a Reality

The Medicare Audiology Access Improvement Act (S. 2377) will align Medicare policies with evidence-based practices in the delivery of hearing and balance care through the following provisions:

  • Amends the definition of “audiology services” in the Medicare statute, which specifies the services that audiologists may provide, to include all services already covered by Medicare that are also within an audiologist’s scope of practice;
  • Amends the Medicare definition of practitioner to include audiologists, which improves beneficiary access to audiologic and vestibular care, a change that is consistent with Medicare’s classification of similar health care providers such as clinical social workers and clinical psychologists;
  • Makes technical changes to remove the pre-treatment order requirement, which does not exist with any other federal or commercial payer, allowing beneficiaries to have direct access to audiologists;
  • Ensures seniors and people with disabilities can receive the full scope of audiology services covered by Medicare at Rural Health Centers and Federally Qualified Health Centers; and
  • Makes no changes to the scope of hearing health benefits covered by Medicare or the scope of practice of audiologists.