Issue: Reciprocity of state license to allow interstate SLP and AuD services
Ask your state legislators to support the Audiology & Speech-Language Pathology Interstate Compact (ASLP-IC). The ASLP-IC will allow licensed audiologists and speech-language pathologists to obtain a privilege to practice across state lines without becoming licensed in additional ASLP-IC member states. This allows you to provide services to underserved or geographically isolated populations through telepractice and helps facilitate continuity of care when patients, clients, and/or students relocate or travel to another compact state. The ASLP-IC has been adopted in the following states: LA, NC, OK, UT, WV, WY.
Learn more about the ASLP-IC.
Take Action Now: https://takeaction.asha.org/asha/StateAdvocacy?13
Issue: Medicare Fee Schedule Reduction: Payment for SLP and AuD services will be reduced an average of 10%
Information: Medicare payment increases for primary care providers would result in lower payments for outpatient services provided by audiologists and speech-language pathologists (SLPs). Ask your U.S. representative to cosponsor H.R. 8702, the Holding Providers Harmless From Medicare Cuts During COVID-19 Act of 2020, which would provide relief payments to hold impacted providers harmless from the devastating impact of these cuts scheduled for implementation in Janurary 2021. This bill will allow CMS to provide needed increases in payments to providers that bill E/M codes without having to implement cuts to audiologists.
Issue: Telehealth Services by SLPs and AuDs after the COVID 19 Pandemic
Information: Medicare does not cover audiology and speech-language pathology services delivered via telehealth even though audiologists and SLPs are qualified providers of telehealth services, are licensed in states, reimbursed by private payers, and authorized by various state Medicaid plans to provide services in this manner.
This is especially critical given the current coronavirus pandemic! Audiologists and SLPs need to continue providing medically necessary care in a manner that promotes the safety of themselves and their patients while adhering to government recommendations to discourage the spread of the virus by limiting close contact with others, especially older individuals and those with underlying health conditions.
Ask your members of Congress to protect patients and providers while ensuing access to medically necessary care provided by audiologists and SLPs by cosponsoring the CONNECT for Health Act of 2019 (H.R. 4932/S. 2741) and urging its inclusion in any further legislative response to the Coronavirus pandemic.
Issue: Increase Federal Funding for IDEA
Information: Contact your senators and ask them to increase federal funding for children with disabilities as part of the Fiscal Year 2021 education funding legislation or learn more about IDEA.
Additional federal resources are needed to ensure states are following federal mandates to provide a free appropriate public education to all children with disabilities. As schools across the nation move to a virtual education setting during the pandemic, providing special education services becomes challenging and costly.