Skip to Content
Home | news | Press Releases

Press Releases

FDA advances Carter-backed effort to make hearing aids more affordable

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration today announced a new proposal aimed at making hearing aid technology more affordable and accessible for millions of Americans.

The move comes four years after U.S. Representative Earl L. “Buddy” Carter shepherded legislation through Congress calling on the agency to bring down the cost of hearing aids by making them available over-the-counter.
“This is a common-sense effort to make hearing aids more affordable for those who need them,” said Carter.  “Opening competition sparks innovation and brings down costs to increase access to devices that can drastically improve the quality of life for many Americans.  While it should not have taken this long, I appreciate the FDA finally heading Congress’ call to open this market.”
The Over-the-Counter Hearing Aid Act of 2017 was signed into law by President Donald J. Trump in August 2017 as part of a larger reauthorization of the FDA.  Carter joined former Rep. Joseph P. Kennedy (D-MA) in introducing the hearing aid provision.  
Carter even sustained attacks from a secretive dark money group for reaching across the aisle to bring down the cost of hearing aids.
Hearing aids currently average more than $5,000 per pair and are often not covered by Medicare or private insurance.  The National Institute on Deafness and Other Communications Disorders reports that only 1 in 5 who need them use hearing aids with many citing cost as a barrier.