Many people who need hearing aids never get them, in part because they currently require a prescription from an audiologist or hearing aid specialist. Plus, often they are not covered by private insurance or Medicare. Barbara Kelley, the Executive Director of the Hearing Loss Association of America, joins us to discuss the FDA’s new proposed category of OTC hearing aids. They should bring hearings aids within the reach of millions more Americans.
Kelley says that 80% of people who could benefit from hearing aids, don’t end up getting them. So she’s hopeful the new proposed over-the-counter category will provided greater access to many more people. But, also, the FDA plan will also require consumers to cut through myths and lack of information to get what they want, meaning consumer education is imperative.
This is where I want the FDA to make sure that there are return policies and that people have recourse… And that people have education to know that if this over-the-counter products doesn’t work, maybe you should find the help of a hearing healthcare professional.— Barbara Kelley, Executive Director, Hearing Loss Association of America
- Barbara Kelley, Executive Director of the Hearing Loss Association of America