policy / research

State Issues

States play and important role in addressing issues relating to hearing health, including regulating professions, standards, and insurance coverage requirements. Recently enacted state laws include:



  • Virginia HB 1833/SB 1279: Defines “over-the-counter hearing aid” and “prescription hearing aid”. Status: Enacted
  • Montana SB 456: Amends the definition of “practice of audiology” and “licensed hearing aid dispenser” to include ordering prescription hearing aids. provides definitions for “over-the counter hearing aid” and “prescription hearing aid”. Status: Enacted
  • Texas SB 2017: Adds a section for “over-the-counter hearing aids” and provides that a license is not required. Amends the definition of “fitting and dispensing hearing instruments” to include “prescribing, ordering, or authorizing the use of hearing instruments”. Status: Enacted
  • Kentucky SB 58: Updates the definition of “practice of fitting hearing instruments” to include “order the use of” prescription hearing aids. Defines “prescription hearing aid” and “over-the-counter hearing aid”. Status: Enacted
  • Florida HB 1387/SB 1506: Adds “prescription” to “hearing aid” throughout the practice act and amends the definition of “dispensing hearing aids” to include “prescription”. Status: Enacted
  • Rhode Island H 5874/S 299: Includes under the definition of “practice of fitting and dealing in hearing aids” the following: “including ordering the use of hearing aids”. Status: Enacted
  • Oregon SB 558: Amends the definition of “dealing in hearing aids” to include “order the use of”. Status: Enacted
  • Minnesota HF 2038/SF 2108: Amends the hearing aid dispenser and audiology practice act to add and define “prescription hearing aid”. Status: Enacted



Currently, the following states mandate minimum insurance coverage requirements for hearing aids for adults: Arkansas, Connecticut, Illinois, New Hampshire, and Rhode Island, and Maine. Recently passed state laws requiring minimum coverage for adults include:

  • Washington HB 1222: Requires coverage for hearing instruments, including bone conduction hearing devices, but does not include OTC hearing instruments. Coverage shall also include the initial assessment, fitting, adjustment, auditory training, and ear molds as necessary.
  • Minnesota SF 2995: Strikes provision limiting the insurance requirement to individuals 18 years of age and younger. A health plan must cover hearing aids for all individuals for hearing loss that is not correctable by other covered procedures.
  • Illinois HB 2443: Strikes provision limiting the insurance requirement to individuals 18 years of age and younger. The law requires coverage for medically necessary hearing instruments and related services when a hearing care professional prescribes a hearing instrument to augment communication.

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