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October 23/30, 2018

Hearing Care Access?Focus on Clinical Services, Not Devices

Author Affiliations
  • 1Cochlear Center for Hearing and Public Health, Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, Maryland
  • 2Department of Otolaryngology–Head and Neck Surgery, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland
  • 3Department of Health Policy and Management, Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, Maryland
JAMA. 2018;320(16):1641-1642. doi:10.1001/jama.2018.11649

Hearing loss, the third most common chronic condition among older adults,1 has suddenly been thrust into the legislative spotlight following the emergence of research that found an association between hearing loss and important health care outcomes, including cognitive decline and dementia.1 Hearing loss and hearing care access have received attention from the White House,2 US Congress,3 and major scientific institutions.1 Following recent legislation, hearing aids to address mild to moderate hearing losses are set to become available over-the-counter (OTC) by 2020, disentangling the purchase of hearing aids from the hearing rehabilitative services that support them.

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