Over-the-Counter Hearing Instruments – The End of the World as We Know It?
By Terry Ross, Director of Sales, North America, Auditdata LLC
Anytime traditional markets are challenged by new technology, there is typically an immediate dismissive and negative reaction by those directly affected, and so it was from audiologists to the passage of the OTC Act of 2017. After all, the very fabric of the business, the income stream and the profession was being challenged by this legislation.
An Act to Encourage Consumers’ Freedom of Choice
First let’s lay the foundation for what is occurring in the hearing care market with respect to this new legislation in the U.S. The movement towards “better access” for consumers really gained momentum in October of 2015, when the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology delivered its findings with the ultimate goal of lowering the cost of hearing aids, encouraging more choice and options for consumers, and to inspire technological innovations with regards to amplification.