If you have Medicare Part B and you want the same access to hearing and balance healthcare services as the rest of America enjoys, tell your Congressman to support the Medicare Audiologist Access and Services Act.The Act will:
- Improve access to care by allowing you to seek treatment directly from your audiologist.
- Authorize Medicare reimbursement for covered services when provided by your audiologist.
- Address the medical provider workforce shortage confronting our country by including audiologists in the list of Medicare recognized physicians.
The Medicare Audiologist Access and Services Act will improve the delivery of hearing and balance services for millions of Medicare beneficiaries, while eliminating unnecessary duplicative services and waste. According to a recent report from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), hearing loss is the third‐most common chronic physical condition among older adults in the United States after hypertension and arthritis, and is twice as likely as diabetes or cancer. Given that 10,000 Americans become Medicare-eligible every day, simplifying access to audiology care has never been more important.
The Medicare Audiologist Access and Services Act was carefully constructed to promote high-quality, cost-effective audiologic care for Medicare patients, without increasing per-patient costs to the Medicare system. Federal health plans and most private insurance plans, including Medicare Advantage plans, already provide the access to care that is being sought for Medicare Part B patients under the Medicare Audiologist Access and Services Act.
The Medicare Audiologist Access and Services Act will remove existing barriers to care for millions of Americans by allowing Medicare Part B patients with a suspected hearing or balance problem to go directly to the audiologist, without obtaining an order from an outside provider, such as a medical doctor or nurse practitioner. It will allow patients their choice of qualified providers for Medicare-covered audiologic services, and it will help address the medical doctor workforce shortage confronting our country, while helping to meet the increasing demand for health care services by the growing Medicare population.
The practice of audiology has evolved tremendously over the past 50 years. Medicare Part B has simply not kept pace with these changes. The Medicare Audiologist Access and Services Act will fix this problem and foster exceptional patient outcomes in a manner that is fiscally responsible and functionally sustainable.