HLAA develops position papers to lead public dialogue, respond to urgent issues affecting people with hearing loss, advocate for support for people with hearing loss, and ensure the voices of people with hearing loss are heard in the public sphere.
The HLAA Board and staff knowledgeable in public policy, with input from other sources as needed, develops position statements, then presents it to the HLAA Board of Directors for approval. These papers give context and background information on a topic important to people with hearing loss, and, in some cases, make a case for change. HLAA position papers are available to the public and are used by individuals and HLAA Chapters and State Organizations when talking to legislators, media, industry and others who are interested in HLAA views.
Free Access to Automatic Captioning for People with Hearing Loss
HLAA, the leader in advocacy for people with hearing loss, calls for all video calling and conference platforms to offer all individuals free (or no-cost) captioning services for the benefit of people with hearing loss, and at the same level that these platforms offer services to their other customers. We strongly encourage the creation and adoption of performance standards for all forms of captions across these digital platforms.
International Standards of Care for Cochlear Implants
Cochlear implants (CIs) are an effective medical treatment for many adults living with severe, profound, or moderate sloping to profound sensorineural hearing loss. HLAA supports the adoption of international standards of care for the use of cochlear implants as outlined in the International Consensus Paper on Adult Cochlear Implantation.
Medicare Coverage of the Cost of Hearing Aids and Hearing Health Services
HLAA recommends that the Medicare program cover costs of acquiring and successfully using hearing aids.
Insurance Coverage for Hearing Aids
HLAA recommends that health insurance cover the full cost of acquiring hearing aids.
HLAA supports the use of an Aural Rehabilitation model for hearing healthcare to reduce or eliminate participation restrictions and activity limitations imposed by hearing loss.
Over-the-Counter Hearing Aids
HLAA supports a regulated market for over-the-counter hearing aids that are intended for adults with mild-to-moderate hearing loss and which meet strict performance and labeling criteria to ensure safety and effectiveness.
Screening for Hearing Loss in Primary Health Care Settings
HLAA supports the inclusion of a standardized approach to screening for hearing loss in primary health care settings that includes both a subjective and objective component in all adults during routine physicals; the “Welcome to Medicare” assessment; and Medicare annual risk assessments, that are accomplished in primary care settings.
Telecoils and Hearing Loops
HLAA supports the inclusion of telecoil technology in all hearing aids and cochlear implants as well as the installation of high quality, well-maintained hearing loop assistive listening systems in public spaces such as ticket counters, auditoriums, houses of worship, classrooms, theaters, concert halls, airports, train stations, and public transportation.
Wider Access to the Full Spectrum of Hearing Technology Benefiting People with Hearing Loss
The HLAA supports a hearing health care system that provides consumers access to the full spectrum of safe and effective hearing technology to meet their individual needs.
The National Academies (NASEM) Report
On June 2, 2016, the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine released its historic report on Hearing Health Care for Adults: Priorities for Access and Affordability. The report emphasizes that hearing loss is a major public health concern and provides 12 recommendations to improve hearing health care. HLAA strongly supports those recommendations and is working to achieve their implementation.
Job Qualification Testing
It is HLAA’s position that employees and applicants who use hearing aids must be tested with their hearing aids when determining their qualifications for jobs where a level of hearing proficiency is a legitimate criterion.