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Know the Facts...ASHA Supports the Profession of Audiology

The numbers tell the story…

  • More audiologists affiliate with ASHA than with any other professional organization.
  • In 2014, nearly 14,000 CCC-A audiologists affiliated with ASHA.
  • The retention rate for certified audiology members has remained above 95% for the past decade.
  • 577 AuD degrees were awarded in academic year 2012–2013 (based on 95% of AuD programs reporting).

Audiology has significant representation in ASHA's governance.

  • The Audiology Advisory Council comprises 54 ASHA members (equivalent in number to its speech-language pathology counterpart) who are certified audiologists or hearing scientists.
  • Audiology has equal representation in the practice-specific areas of the ASHA Board of Directors.

ASHA advocates for audiology professional services.

Association volunteer leaders and ASHA National Office staff

  • represent and advocate for the interests of the audiology profession before federal regulators and legislators;
  • work with public and private payers for reimbursement for audiology services;
  • advocate for coverage of diagnostic, rehabilitative, and monitoring services provided by audiologists as part of a comprehensive Medicare benefit;
  • represent audiology in collaboration with the American Academy of Audiology before the American Medical Association's Current Procedural Terminology Editorial Panel and Relative Value Update Committee;
  • advocate with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) for billing and coding issues to ensure adequate reimbursement rates for audiology services.

ASHA and the American Speech-Language-Hearing Foundation support audiology science and research.

  • ASHA offers four peer-reviewed journals. The American Journal of Audiology and the Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research feature many articles of interest to audiologists.
  • ASHA's National Center for Evidence-Based Practice in Communication Disorders (N-CEP) has guided ASHA's commitment toward evidence-based practice.
  • ASHA's online Practice Portal combines evidence, expert opinion, and a wealth of resources to inform evidence-based clinical practice.
  • ASHA actively promotes research funding through its support of the ASHFoundation, which funds eight science-related programs.
  • The ASHFoundation awarded its largest funding disbursement in history in 2014; 70 doctoral and post-doctoral researchers, graduate students, and leaders in the field collectively received $661,475 as an investment in their future careers and achievements. Learn who received funding and read about their innovative research, projects, and areas of study.
  • The ASHFoundation sponsors innovative programs to advance science and the knowledge base, such as the transformative 2014 Implementation Science Summit.

ASHA's Certificate of Clinical Competence (CCC) signifies quality.

  • First established in 1952, the Certificate of Clinical Competence is nationally recognized by state licensure boards, employers, and consumers.
  • The audiologists who maintain their certification have committed to ongoing continuing education and strong professional ethics.
  • ASHA certification allows audiologists to easily transfer their licensure from one state to another.

ASHA is a leader in establishing and enforcing ethical standards for the professions.

  • The ASHA Board of Ethics adjudicates an average of four audiology complaints per year that can lead to public sanctions, such as suspension, revocation, or censure, or a private sanction of reprimand.
  • The 16-member Board comprises at least six audiologists, six speech-language pathologists, and one public member. Four of the 16 Board members serve on the Ethics Education Subcommittee during the last year of their terms.

The Council on Academic Accreditation in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology (CAA) is committed to high academic standards for audiology training programs.

  • The year 2015 marks the 50th anniversary of accreditation (master's-level programs were accredited in 1965–2006; clinical doctoral-level programs, from 1999).
  • All 74 existing audiology entry-level clinical doctoral education programs are accredited or hold candidate status by the CAA.
  • To be CAA accredited, programs must agree to meet current academic and clinical standards and agree to be monitored and evaluated through periodic site visits.
  • Seven audiologists serve on the CAA (five academics and two practitioners).
  • The CAA accreditation site visitor pool includes approximately 25 audiologists.
  • The CAA is the only accrediting agency for graduate education programs in audiology that is recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education (since 1967).
  • Since 1964, the CAA has been continuously recognized as an accrediting agency for graduate education programs in audiology by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) and its predecessors.

ASHA helps audiologists enhance their professional practice through high quality professional consultation and professional development.

  • More than 8,500 audiologists contact ASHA each year with questions related to professional ethics, scope of practice, practice management, patient education, and advocacy.
  • The ASHA National Office has a staff of 275, including 10 ASHA-certified audiologists.
  • Of the 172,500 calls and e-mails ASHA received last year, 8,600 were audiology related. That is an average of 717 calls and e-mails each month from professionals and consumers.
  • Every October, ASHA offers the largest annual online educational conference for audiologists—providing a convenient, affordable way for audiologists to earn continuing education credits.
  • ASHA Professional Development also offers many other CEU courses in a variety of formats on topic areas that include Hearing, Hearing Loss, and Balance; Cochlear Implants and Auditory Processing; and Assessment, Amplification, and Audiologic Rehabilitation.
  • There are 540 ASHA Approved CE Providers throughout the country.
  • In 2014, there were 6,500+ opportunities to earn ASHA CEUs for audiology-specific courses.

ASHA is committed to seeking opportunities to engage and unite audiologists.

  • In April 2014, ASHA convened an ad hoc committee on audiology outcomes measures and began the process of developing a large-scale audiology outcomes database.
  • In March and again in August 2014, ASHA met with volunteer leaders of the American Academy of Audiology (AAA) and the Academy of Doctors of Audiology (ADA) to discuss areas of collaboration that would benefit the profession of audiology.
  • In July–August 2014, ASHA coordinated an interorganizational group with the AAA, the ADA, the American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery (AAO-HNS), and others to respond to the CMS proposal to eliminate osseointegrated implants from coverage.
  • In October 2012, 66 members, including 27 audiologists, attended the Changing Health Care Landscape Summit hosted by ASHA.
  • In February 2012, ASHA—along with the AAA, the ADA, the AAO-HNS, and the International Hearing Society—issued a Joint Statement on Consumer-Administered Hearing Tests and Direct-to-Consumer Hearing Aid Sales.
  • In 2012, ASHA collaborated with AARP on a national poll of AARP members' hearing health, which outlined the state of hearing among the 50+ generation.
  • ASHA has agreements with the Alexander Graham Bell Association for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, Educational Audiology Association, and National Hearing Conservation Association that provide reciprocal benefits in the areas of advocacy, exhibiting, and promotion.
  • In 2010, ASHA engaged all audiology organizations to respond to the American Medical Association scope of practice statement.
  • In 2009, ASHA and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) became founding members of the Early Hearing Detection & Intervention–Pediatric Audiology Links to Services (EHDI–PALS) Advisory Committee.
  • Since January 2009, the ASHA Health Care Economics Committee (HCEC) has coordinated monthly conference calls with representatives of other audiology organizations.
  • In December 2008, ASHA convened 10 audiology organizations at its National Office to begin the development of quality measures for the Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS). This collaboration was enthusiastically named the Audiology Quality Consortium (AQC). The AQC meets monthly to continue PQRS measure development efforts for audiologists. 

ASHA and the American Speech-Language-Hearing Foundation support audiology students.

  • In the past 7 years, the ASHFoundation has awarded a total of $783,000 to audiologists and audiology students.
  • Since 2008, more than 119 audiology students have received the Audiology/Hearing Science Research Travel Award (ARTA), supporting their travel to the ASHA Convention.
  • EdFind, ASHA's online search engine, helps prospective students find detailed information on all audiology graduate programs.
  • in 2014, 48 audiology and hearing science students and faculty participated in research mentoring programs designed to support the PhD pipeline and the CSD science base.
  • In 2014, 5 AuD students participated in the Minority Student Leadership Program (MSLP) and 20 students interested in audiology careers participated in the S.T.E.P. mentoring program.
  • A National Student Speech Language Hearing Association (NSSLHA) member represents audiology students on ASHA's Audiology Advisory Council. NSSLHA advises ASHA's Board of Directors regarding policy and emerging issues in the field of audiology, and NSSLHA's National Advisor serves on ASHA's Board.
  • A NSSLHA AuD student serves on ASHA's Council for Clinical Certification.
  • AuD students who have national membership in NSSLHA during both the third and fourth years of their programs are able to take advantage of a $225 savings on the initial dues and fees for ASHA membership and certification.
  • NSSLHA offers a 1-year introductory membership for first- or second-year AuD students. This offer makes it possible for audiology students to experience the benefits of national membership for half the price.

ASHA actively promotes public awareness of hearing health issues.

  • ASHA's Identify the Signs campaign has reached more than half a billion consumers.
  • ASHA's Listen To Your Buds campaign has reached media audiences in the hundreds of millions using audiologists all around the country as media sources.
  • ASHA's public information efforts reach millions of consumers each year, and almost a third of the visitors to ASHA's website are from the public.
  • The World Health Organization (WHO) sought ASHA's collaboration on the development and promotion of a 2015 WHO public education campaign to raise awareness about noise-induced hearing loss.

Interesting Facts About ASHA's History

  • The Association was founded in 1925.
  • The ASHA Code of Ethics was first introduced in 1935.
  • Past ASHA President Raymond Carhart was the first to use the term audiology back in 1945.
  • "Hearing" was added to the Association's name in 1947.
  • Certification standards were established in 1952.
  • ASHA, the AAO-HNS, and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) became the founding members of the Joint Committee on Infant Hearing (JCIH) in 1969.

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