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Support for Greater Access to Hearing Aids with Patient Safety Preserved

March 22, 2017 - 10:21am

ALEXANDRIA, VA —The American Academy of Otolaryngology—Head and Neck Surgery (AAO-HNS) supports access to over-the-counter (OTC) hearing aids for adults with mild-to-moderate hearing loss when paired with appropriate patient safety and consumer protections.

In responding to the introduction of the “Over-the-Counter Hearing Aid Act of 2017,” the AAO-HNS recognizes the leadership of Senators Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Charles Grassley (R-IA), Johnny Isakson (R-GA), and Maggie Hassan (D-NH), and U.S. Representatives Marsha Blackburn (R-TN-7) and Joseph Kennedy III (D-MA-4) in providing a new pathway for consumers to access assistive hearing devices.

To ensure patient safety is preserved, the Academy stands by its recommendation regarding the benefits of a medical evaluation by a physician, followed by a standardized hearing test (via a hearing health professional or appropriate online/technological source), before an individual purchases any type of basic hearing aid or other FDA-regulated assistive hearing device.