The ACCC report on its investigation into the hearing aid industry was made on World Hearing Day (3 March 2017).
The ACCC has released a concise report and a short document that provides a guideline to members of the public who are considering purchasing hearing devices.
Independent Audiologists Australia (IAA) appreciates the attention that the ACCC has given to the business practices associated with the selling of hearing aids – including sales targets, commissions on device sales and ownership structures of clinics. The ACCC report brings into focus many of the concerns expressed by IAA in relation to the practice of the audiology profession. IAA looks forward to participating in ongoing initiatives to ensure public protection and regulation that will ensure that audiology services are trusted by all Australians.
ABC News reported on the ACCC report, with items appearing on radio, television and online. Commercial television stations also reported on the issues associated with the selling of hearing aids.
The ABC World News report featuring IAA Executive Officer, Louise Collingridge, calling for registration of audiologists in Australia, can be accessed HERE.
Grant Collins, Vice President of IAA was interviewed by ABC Radio 630 in Queensland. He explained that regulation of the audiology profession and hearing device industry is very limited. He also provided advice to the public who are Office of Hearing Services voucher holders to ensure fully subsidised hearing aids are discussed and that anyone paying for hearing aids ought to be fully aware of how their specific clinical needs would be met by the features in those hearing aids. Grant explained that advanced noise filtering in hearing aids, one of the most common features of expensive hearing devices, may have little benefit for those with processing difficulties (which may be due to age) or little residual hearing – even though one of the most common complaints to audiologists is difficulty hearing in noise.
Choice Magazine have issued a short article in response to the ACCC – HERE.
Deafness Forum issued a special report on the ACCC that includes invited responses from various organizations, including IAA – HERE.
Port News featured an article on 20 March, featuring IAA member Dr Daniel Mestric calling for changes to regulation – HERE