Virginia Regulatory Town Hall
Department of Professional and Occupational Regulation
Board for Hearing Aid Specialists and Opticians
Hearing Aid Specialists Regulations [18 VAC 80 ‑ 20]
Action Amendments to Board for Hearing Aid Specialists Regulations 2012
Comment Period Ended on 3/14/2012
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3/11/12  10:55 pm
Commenter: Patricia Gaffney, AuD- Nova Southeastern University

Audiologists do not need a separate license

Dear Board Members- thank you for allowing public comment.  On the table is hearing instrument examinations and separate licensure for audiologists.  Coming from a university that is accredited to teach audiologists under two audiology accrediting bodies, audiologists are trained to dispense hearing instruments.  Audiology students receive knowledge about candidacy, necessary medical referrals under FDA and state requirements, technology, counseling, and rehabilitation in the area of hearing instruments in didactic and clinical training.  It is well within the scope of practice and education to fit hearing instruments and should be incorporated into the audiology license without the need for a separate dispensing license.  

      The most important thing is public protection and welfare.   A dispensing license in addition to an audiology license does not protect the public any more than a comprehensive audiology license which includes dispensing.  In actuality, it makes it more expensive for excellent private practice audiologists to afford to practice in your state as well as becoming a detriment to attracting new audiologists to your state.  In the coming years more and more people will be at the age of needing hearing aids and to keep obstacles in the way of  serving the needs of your constiuents.  Many states have a single comprehensive license for audiologists, including my state of Florida, without negative impact on the welfare of the public.


Thank you.


CommentID: 23488