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IHS Policy Statement on the Use of Telepractice in the Delivery of Hearing Healthcare

Telepractice is a form of electronic care by which a licensed hearing healthcare professional utilizes technology to help people beyond the office receive care for their hearing needs. 

Telepractice may be effectively accomplished without in-person, face-to-face contact, and may include, but is not limited to, aural rehabilitation, counseling, follow-up care and adjustments of/with hearing aids or any other form of hearing assistance technology, and troubleshooting hearing aid problems. 
The delivery of hearing healthcare services for the provision of hearing aid dispensing and related services via telepractice shall conform to applicable state/provincial and federal laws and regulations governing the practice of hearing aid dispensing and telehealth/telepractice delivery.  Telepractice is meant to serve as an extension of an existing practice’s service offerings and should be delivered as such. 

IHS does not support telepractice for primary clinical services (including hearing evaluations, otoscopy, hearing aid fittings, hearing aid dispensing, initial hearing aid counseling and orientation, and verification and validation of the hearing aid fitting and programming) unless a licensed hearing healthcare professional is actively and in-person participating in the service working with a licensed healthcare professional who is physically in-person with the patient/client. 
Approved by the Board of Governors on April 9, 2018.

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