Texas Academy of Audiology News
Consumer Warning from State Board
State Board of Examiners for Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology Consumer Warning Regarding Purchasing Hearing Aids:
"It is the recommendation of this Board that before purchasing hearing aids, including over the internet, via mail-order, or over-the-counter, that you visit in person a licensed audiologist, who is trained to provide you with a comprehensive audiological evaluation.
"If you have a complaint regarding audiology services, you may click here to file."
Thanks to Our 2013 Sponsors!
Visit our 2013 TAA Sponsors now!
President's Message: Tires and the TAA
5/1/2013 - Recently, I needed to purchase new tires for my vehicle. Being on a state employee meager income, I decided to purchase only 2 tires and wait 6 weeks to purchase the other 2 tires. Imagine my disbelief after I instructed the young man behind the counter to put my 2 new tires on the front and he said he could not. In fact, it’s against the “law.” .... WOW!! The tire industry has apparently hired a bevy of tenacious lobbyists to impact federal policy makers! More...
TAA remains dedicated to the well-being of Texas consumers.
We are concerned about questionable service delivery of hearing aids by non-hearing healthcare individuals.
According to the FDA, non-hearing healthcare “providers” are allowed to sell hearing devices. IF a device is titled “Hearing Aid” and dispensed by a non-licensed individual (i.e. not an Audiologist OR Hearing Aid Dispenser), there is action YOU and TAA can take!
- YOU must substantiate that a device labeled as “Hearing Aid” is sold by non-licensed individual
- YOU must submit a complaint to the State Board of Examiners
- YOU may include TAA in your correspondence with the State, so that WE can work TOGETHER to keep the well-being of Texas consumers a priority!
State Board of Examiners of Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology
Texas Department of State Health Services
Mail Code 1982
P.O. Box 149347
Austin , Texas 78714-9347
(512) 834-6627 (phone)
(512) 834-6677 (fax)
Visit DSHS website
HAVE YOU JOINED TAA? WE need a unified voice for Audiology! Join today!
TEHDI: Are you following up correctly?
Notice: Did you know that if an Audiologist provides a follow up hearing screen to an infant, he/she must report the results back to the Department? This also means, even when an infant passes the follow-up hearing screen or diagnostic the Audiologist must report the test results back to the department. Reporting the test results back to the referral source is not adequate; the Audiologist needs to report the outcomes to the TEHDI program. Are you using the latest TEHDI follow-up and intervention form? Read more about HB 411 and find a copy of the latest form here.
Cease & Desist Letter Sent to hi
8/21/2012—As a result of a joint complaint filed with both licensing boards by the Texas Academy of Audiology and THAA last April, the Texas Licensing Boards for both audiologists and dispensers just issued letters to hi Health Innovations, a subsidiary of United Healthcare/United Health Group.
Both the State Board of Examiners for Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology and the State Committee of Examiners in the Fitting and Dispensing of Hearing Instruments told hi Health to... More...
Medicaid Hearing Aid Proposed Changes 10/ 2012
Download the latest Medicaid hearing aid proposed rates for October 2012 from the Professional Issues page in the Members Only section. (Log in first.)
The Texas Academy of Audiology was represented in Austin on Wednesday, August 15th at the Medicaid Rate Hearing by Matt Lyon in which he provided testimony. TAA did not oppose the proposed rate reductions as we understand that this is driven by Medicaid's need to reduce expenditures and not by what is best for the consumer. The issue we are most concerned about is how Texas Administrative Code §355.8141 is being interpreted and enforced.
As many of you know the Health and Human Services Commission Office of the Inspector General (OIG) of Texas has been looking into fraudulent Medicaid practices and audits have occurred in a number of hearing aid and audiology practices. We also know...More...
PAC Plea: Support Needed Pre-Elections
Political Action Committee Update: Find the latest Texas Academy PAC news here.
Join/Renew Your Membership in the
Texas Academy of Audiology for 2012
Are you a current member of the Texas Academy? Membership is on the calendar year, January 1st–December 31st.
Note: To join our Facebook group page, you must be a current TAA member.
Joining or renewing is quick and easy.
First, get your password and log in,
then join for 2012!
2013 Student Poster Winners
11/1/2013 - We had 12 entries this year! Congratulations to our Todd H. Porter Student Poster Scholarship winners:
|3rd||(3-way tie) Annie Cardella, Kim Fiorentino, and Mallory McCart|
Here from left to right - Annie Cardella, Rachel Higginbotham, Jane Porter and Katharine Fitzharris. Kim Fiorentino and Mallory McCart are not in the photo.
Special thanks to Jane Porter for presenting the certificates and prize money to our winners!
Please Take This Survey
9/18/2013 - TX NICHQ IHSIS (National Initiative for Children's Healthcare Quality - Infant Hearing Screening & Intervention Systems) team has developed a survey for Texas audiologists. The survey will be used in a number of ways to assess the education needs of audiologists in the state regarding our infant screening program and will help frame some of Alicia Favila and Angela Shoup's TAA pre-convention EHCI presentation with Angela Shoup.
Click here to take the survey: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/YG2VD5C
National Deaf-Blind Equipment Distribution Program
8/13/2013 - Do you know someone who struggles with both vision and hearing loss? The National Deaf-Blind Equipment Distribution Program (NDBEDP) may be able to help. Funded by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), the NDBEDP puts free communications technology into the hands of people who qualify as Deaf-Blind and meet certain income requirements. Commonly known as iCanConnect, the program offers a wide array of equipment ranging from phone amplifiers to portable microphone and headset devices to iPads with adjustable fonts and colors that make it easier to see emails and texts. The program is designed to ensure individuals who are deaf-blind have access to the Internet and to advanced communications to communicate with colleagues, family and community. For more information, visit www.icanconnect.org.
Hearing Aid Reimbursement
5/28/2013 - For the latest on hearing aid reimbursement, see details in TAA Members Only area.
Aetna's Response to TAA
5/22/2013 - Login as a TAA Member and read Aetna's response to TAA President Jackie Clark regarding payment for evaluation and management service codes for audiologists.
5/24/2013 - Log in as a TAA member and check out the latest TAA Bill Tracker on the Governmental Issues page.
Upcoming TEHDI eSP™ Trainings
5/16/2013 - To all Audiologists that screen and or provide diagnostics to infants and children. The Texas Early Hearing Detection and Intervention Program (TEHDI) is excited to introduce...More...
HHSC Responds to TAA
4/23/2013 - Dr. Kyle L. Janek, Executive Commissioner of the Texas Health and Human Services Commission, responds to the Texas Academy of Audiology’s request for clarification about Medicaid Reimbursement.
Log in as a TAA member and read more...
Letter from TAA to Texas HHSC Director
April 4, 2013
Dear Dr. Janek,
A number of Texas Audiologists have expressed concern to the Texas Academy of
Audiology about the Texas Health and Human Services Commission's current
definition of acceptable Audiology Billing. As the only organization whose sole
mission is to represent the Profession of Audiology in the State of Texas, we are
Claim Requirements for Non-implantable Hearing Aid Devices to Change 6/1/13
(Posted April 19, 2013)
Effective for dates of service on or after June 1, 2013, the way providers submit claims for non-implantable hearing aid devices will change. More...
Your input regarding SB 312 is valued
The Texas Academy of Audiology is monitoring the progress of SB312. This Bill was brought forward by TSHA and we are working with them to clarify certain issues. Any input from members would be greatly appreciated. Please contact Matt Lyon with your input.
For details of SB312 please visit the Governmental Issues page (Members Only)
Thanks to all who attended. Make plans to join us next year for our 14th Annual Conference at the Renaissance Richardson October 24–26, 2013!
Congratulations to our newest Board Members, Kim Ringer and Chris Araj, and to President Elect Cristen Plummer. Special thanks to outgoing Board Members Jennifer Meeks, Michelle Tejada and Steve Miller for all you have done for the Texas Academy! Thanks to President Jennifer Bobo for a great year!
TAA SENDS A BIG THANKS TO OUR 2012 CONFERENCE VOLUNTEERS!
Jennifer Schreiner, SpeakerTransportation
Ashleigh Fairleigh: Silent Auction
Chris Araj: Silent Auction
Michelle Gillentine: Silent Auction
Amanda Moore: Coordinator of Student Volunteers
Doug Beck: Speaker Extraordinnaire (for filling in impromptu when we had a speaker delayed)
Student Volunteers: Harsha John, Mira D'Souza, Nicole Baldus, Jodi Seligman, Elika Cokely, Rachel Higginbotham, Carmen Pustejovsky, Caryn McLellan, Jennifer Stockwell, Jimmy Miller, Katharine Fitzharris, Nicole Calderon, Aneeqa Amin, Paige Layden, Megan Mears, Sarah Cain, Sadaf Momin, Shirin Jivani, Kathryn Nowak, Lauren Placke, Catherine Pham, Danielle Hummel
THANKS FOR HELPING TO MAKE OUR CONFERENCE A HUGE SUCCESS!
If you would like to volunteer for our 2013 Conference October 24-26
in Richardson, please contact a Board Member! We would love to have your help.
State Board of Examiners for Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology DPS-FBI Fingerprinting Requirement
Amendments to Texas Occupations Code 401 (Senate Bill (SB) 662, 82nd Legislature, Regular Session (2011)) have added a new requirement for all applicants and all licensees to be fingerprinted for all license applications and license renewals postmarked on or after March 1, 2012. More...
A meeting was scheduled regarding the proposed rule change on 9-13-12, however, Medicaid administrators removed the rule change from the agenda at the last moment so Texas Academy representatives did not attend. At the current time, the Medicaid Fee Schedule changes did take effect on 10-1-12 as proposed by Medicaid.
The Texas Academy of Audiology continues to push Medicaid to provide Texas Audiologists a clear definition about the wording of what is the reimbursable amount for a hearing aid provided to beneficiaries of Medicaid benefits. TAA, in partnership with THAA, has proposed an amendment to Rule 355.8141(b) with more precise wording which would eliminate the conflicting language currently published and a joint petition was delivered to Medicaid on Friday. To date, we have heard no response from Medicaid regarding our petition. (Posted 10/30/2012)
Joint Rule Regarding the Sale of Hearing Instruments
The provisions of this §741.104 were adopted effective May 22, 2012. Details...