ASHA Advocate: July 27, 2023

July 27, 2023

The Top Line

ASHA’s Government Affairs and Public Policy Board has been be reviewing input received from members, volunteer leaders, and staff to help identify ASHA’s top advocacy priorities for next year. The GAPPB will use that data to begin drafting the 2024 Public Policy Agenda, which is used to provide direction for specific legislative and regulatory efforts—at both the state and federal level—that ASHA will advocate on in 2024. Check out the 2023 Public Policy Agenda to see our top priorities for this year.


Medicare Audiology Access Improvement Act of 2023 Introduced

Last week, Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) introduced ASHA endorsed legislation, the Medicare Audiology Access Improvement Act (S. 2377) [PDF], to give seniors more timely and robust access to the full range of services audiologists are expertly educated and uniquely qualified to provide. ASHA President Bob Augustine was quoted in Senator Warren’s press release on the bill. Take action now to urge your members of Congress to cosponsor this bill!.

Take action now to support this legislation

Proposed 2024 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule Released

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has released the 2024 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule (MPFS) proposed rule, which establishes payment policies and rates for Part B (outpatient) audiology and speech-language pathology services. Significant policies addressed in this rule include—but are not limited to—new codes for auditory osseointegrated device (AOD) programming and caregiver training; across the board payment cuts; telehealth services; and quality reporting. Learn more on ASHA’s website.

Working for You

  • Letters were sent to the House [PDF] and Senate [PDF] opposing amendments to the National Defense Authorization Act, which would restrict access to gender-affirming care and could potentially prevent SLPs from providing gender-affirming voice therapy to military personnel and their dependents.
  • Information was shared summarizing actions by the U.S. Department of Education (ED) to help borrowers in response to the Supreme Court’s decision to block the Administration’s student loan forgiveness program.
  • The Board of Directors released statements in response to recent Supreme Court decisions including affirmative action, student loans, and LGBTQIA+ anti-discrimination laws.
  • ASHA submitted comments [PDF] responding to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) notice of proposed rulemaking on expanding access to care for Medicaid beneficiaries enrolled in Medicaid managed care plans. ASHA’s comments focused on several proposals, including enrollee experience surveys, appointment wait time standards, secret shopper surveys, and proposals to require managed care organizations to calculate and publish provider payment analyses comparing Medicaid rates to those of the MPFS.
  • Get answers to FAQs about billing Medicaid for audiology and speech-language pathology services in the schools.
  • CMS and ED launched the Medicaid and School-Based Services Technical Assistance Center (TAC), which provides resources to empower states and schools to improve access to health care for children enrolled in Medicaid and CHIP, and to comply with Early and Periodic Screening, Diagnosis, and Testing (EPSDT) requirements. ASHA supported creation of the TAC as part of the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act.


Volunteers serving on ASHA’s Government Affairs and Public Policy Board took to Capitol Hill today. They attended six meetings and discussed issues including, the Medicare Audiology Access Improvement Act (S. 2377), the Strengthening Medicare for Patients and Providers Act (H.R. 2474), funding for the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), and the need to establish and fund a Technical Assistance Center focused on communications/speech disorders within the U.S. Department of Education.

     - Thank you for making an impact!


ASHA Corporate Partners