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ASHA Advocate: November 17, 2022

November 17, 2022


The Top Line

The midterm elections have given some clarity into next year’s political environment. A divided Congress, with Republicans narrowly controlling the House of Representatives and Democrats narrowly controlling the Senate, presents both challenges and opportunities for ASHA and our advocacy efforts going forward. However, before the 118th Congress convenes in January, the 117th Congress has important unfinished business to complete. Fiscal year 2023 spending and other “must pass” health care measures promise to make the month of December very busy on Capitol Hill. ASHA will be working to advance several critical priorities during this time, including—but not limited to—the Medicare Audiologist Access and Services Act (S. 1587/H.R. 1731), mitigation to reimbursement cuts under Medicare Part B, expanded telehealth access, special education and health care funding, and the Allied Health Workforce Diversity Act (H.R. 3320). Please stay tuned for updates on these priorities as developments warrant.

ASHA Releases 2023 Public Policy Agenda

Advocacy is about effecting positive change. Advocacy is about partnership. Advocacy is about perseverance. The 2023 Public Policy Agenda [PDF] establishes a number of priorities aimed at ensuring that the value of audiologists and speech-language pathologists (SLPs) in schools, health care, early intervention, private practice, and higher education settings is adequately reflected in rapidly evolving laws, regulations, and payment policies. The 2023 Public Policy Agenda becomes operative in January. ASHA staff is identifying concrete objectives to achieve that meaningfully advance each priority in the current political and fiscal environment. Stay tuned for more information!

2023-PPA-COVER

Working for You

  • ASHA has developed a detailed summary of the 2023 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule final rule, which includes updates on Medicare coverage of telehealth services, coding, payment reductions, and physician order requirement changes for audiology hearing assessment services.
  • ASHA participated in a panel discussion on supporting students with disabilities at the “K–12 COVID-19 Response Across the Nation: What Worked, What We Learned, and What’s Next” symposium. Panelists from national partner associations, state and local leaders, researchers, teachers, and parents discussed how to transform lessons learned into awareness, advocacy, and action to support students with disabilities. Take action to support issues important to students and school-based members!
  • ASHA has joined with allied stakeholders to urge federal agencies to finalize a congressionally mandated rule to prevent health insurers from discriminating against audiologists, SLPs, and other nonphysician providers. The goal is to stop insurers from preventing nonphysician participation in plans and/or failing to cover services furnished by such providers.
  • ASHA-PAC contributed $176,000 to 45 Democrats and 31 Republicans this cycle. Those candidates won 96% of their races. Learn more about how ASHA-PAC ensures your voice is heard on Capitol Hill and how you can support those efforts..

Spotlight!

"Advocacy to me means being part of the team that helps to make positive change for the patients I serve and my profession. I love being part of ASHA because there is Power in Numbers with our diverse membership."

—Julie Martinez Verhoff, AuD, PhD, Member Government Affairs and Public Policy Board

Julie-Martinez-Verhoff

ASHA Corporate Partners