2019 ASHA Public Policy Agenda

The 2019 Public Policy Agenda is designed for ASHA members, lawmakers, policymakers, decision makers, and consumers. This resource identifies the top public policy priorities for the professions of audiology and speech-language pathology in the areas of health care and schools, as well as issues impacting professional practice and workforce, and patients, clients, and students.

The 2019 Public Policy Agenda reflects ASHA’s ongoing commitment to patients, clients, and students, evidence-based practice and outcomes, the highest standards of professional ethics, a diverse professional workforce, and nondiscrimination across he full range of dimensions of diversity, including but not limited to: age, disability, ethnicity, gender identity, national origin, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, and veteran status.

Download the full 2019 Public Policy Agenda [PDF].

Read ASHA's comment letters and testimony about health care coverage and reimbursement, education, and professional practices issues.

Health Care Issues

Audiologists and speech-language pathologists provide medically necessary services that result in positive health outcomes and an enhanced quality of life. It is essential that audiology and speech-language pathology services are comprehensively covered and equitably reimbursed by public and private payers

Schools Issues

Audiologists and speech-language pathologists provide critical evidence-based services to students with disabilities. These services build effective communication skills and facilitate academic achievement. It is essential that all students have meaningful access to appropriately resourced audiology and speech-language pathology services, and that all parents have the ability to make informed choices about the education of their children. 

Professional Practice and Workforce Issues

 Audiologists and speech-language pathologists are the leading professionals uniquely trained to assess and treat communication disorders. It is essential that licensure and certification requirements for the professions are preserved, the professions’ defined scopes of practice are protected, a robust graduate and undergraduate student pipeline is supported, and workplace safety is promoted. 

Patient, Client, and Student Issues

Effectively assessing and treating communication disorders is determined by the individual needs of each patient, client, or student. It is essential that public policies (a) are structured to support individuals with communication disorders and (b) ensure that those individuals have meaningful access to the evidence-based care they require.

Resources for Getting Involved

As a member of ASHA, you have a very important voice. The professional perspectives and personal stories you bring to public policy issues have a powerful impact on our collective ability to advance the professions. By working together, we can most effectively educate, inform, and persuade lawmakers, policymakers, and other decision makers to take action that benefits not only our professions but also the patients, clients, and students we serve. 

Questions? Contact Jeffrey P. Regan, Director of Government Affairs and Public Policy, at jregan@asha.org.

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