Missouri Licensing Requirements for Hearing Aid Dispensers
The profession of hearing aid dispenser is regulated at the state level and each state maintains its own standards for licensure or registration.
Initial Licensure Requirements
- be at least 21 years of age
- be of good moral character
- have passed a written and practical exam
- beginning January 1, 2011, an applicant for a hearing instrument specialist license or a hearing instrument specialist-in-training permit shall hold an associate's level degree or higher from a state or regionally accredited institution of higher education*
- beginning January 1, 2013, or any date thereafter when an associate degree program in hearing instrument sciences is available from a state or regionally accredited institution within Missouri, an applicant for a hearing instrument specialist license or a hearing instrument specialist-in-training permit shall hold*
- An associate's degree or higher in hearing instrument sciences; or
- A master's or doctoral degree in audiology from a state or regionally accredited institution.
*Shall not apply to any person holding a valid Missouri hearing instrument specialist license when applying for the renewal of that license.
Whenever the Board of Examiners for Hearing Instrument Specialists (Board) determines that another state or jurisdiction has requirements equivalent to or higher than those in effect in Missouri, and that such state or jurisdiction has a program equivalent to or stricter than the program for determining whether an applicant is qualified to engage in the practice of fitting hearing instruments, the Board shall issue a license to applicants who hold current, unsuspended, and unrevoked certificates or licenses to fit hearing instruments in such other state or jurisdiction provided that such jurisdiction extends like privileges for reciprocal licensing or certification to persons licensed by Missouri with similar qualifications.
An applicant who fulfills the requirements regarding age, character, and education, but has not taken the exam, may obtain a temporary permit upon application to the Board. A holder of a temporary permit who is engaged in supervised training under a supervisor is authorized to use only the title "hearing instrument specialist in training", or its equivalent.
If a hearing instrument specialist in training has not successfully passed the licensing examination within one year from the date of issuance of the temporary permit, the temporary permit may be renewed by the Board once for a period of six months.
The licensee shall obtain a minimum of 24 hours of approved educational hearing instrument programs during the current reporting period. The continuing education reporting period shall consist of a two-year period. It shall begin on January 1 of even numbered years and end on December 31 of the following year.
Audiologists may dispense under an audiology license.
The Board of Examiners for Hearing Instrument Specialists shall consist of five hearing instrument specialists, one otolaryngologist, one voting public member, and one audiologist holding a Certificate of Clinical Competence and licensed. Each hearing instrument specialist on the Board shall have no less than five years of experience in the practice of fitting hearing instruments and shall hold a valid license as a hearing instrument specialist.
A hearing aid trial period is not addressed in the law/regulations.
Mail Order/Internet Sales
No person shall sell through the mails, hearing instruments without prior fitting and testing by a licensed hearing instrument specialist or a licensed audiologist.
The information contained herein was collected and summarized annually. For detailed information on hearing aid dispenser requirements, contact the state board and visit these websites:
Hearing Aid Fitters and Dealers Statutes
Hearing Aid Fitters and Dealers Rules [PDF]
Questions regarding state advocacy issues? Call ASHA at 800-498-2071 and ask for the State Advocacy Team.