Welcome to MSHA (pronounced MaSHA)We are an organization of professionally trained and Montana licensed Audiologists and Speech-Language Pathologists working in hospitals, skilled nursing facilities, neonatal care units, schools and private practices across Montana. We provide reliable, evidence-based and client centered services to individuals throughout their lifespan.
We are dedicated to improving the quality of life for Montanans by improving communication skills (listening, speaking, reading and writing) including accent reduction and swallowing.
We invite you to learn more about us. If you can't find what you are looking for, please contact us:firstname.lastname@example.org.
Join MSHA or renew your membership today. You can do so via Paypal, here.
New Communicator Page
Thursday, January 15th 2015
The Communicator is distributed to members on a quarterly basis. We've built a page where the last several editions are available for download as an Adobe pdf file, here.
Montana Audiology Guild Endorsement of Audiology Patient Choice Bill
Tuesday, December 16th 2014
A majority agreement to support H.R. 5304 was reached by members of the Montana Audiology Guild who were present at a business meeting held on October 17, 2014 in Missoula, MT. A subsequent survey of audiologists was conducted statewide to get feedback from those members not present at the October meeting. 100% of survey respondents agreed to support this bill.
Montana's large land area, combined with a sparse population, makes access to timely health care services difficult. There is already a shortage of audiologists and physicians in Montana. Certain regions of the state have the harshest weather conditions and the fewest available local health care services.
If this bill is passed, title XVIII of the Social Security Act will be amended to provide for treatment of audiologists as limited license physicians solely for the purpose of providing appropriate audiology services covered under Medicare. H.R. 5304 will eliminate the need for physician referral prior to receiving audiology services. For Montana, this will reduce unnecessary travel in inclement weather, as well as improving timeliness of services through direct access.
Passage of H.R. 5304 will also enable consumers to have a choice in qualified providers by authorizing Medicare reimbursement to audiologists for services within their scope of practice that are already covered by Medicare when provided by other health care professionals. H.R. 5304 will allow audiologists to be included in the list of Medicare designated limited license physicians, such as chiropractors, dentists, optometrists and podiatrists.
The Montana Audiology Guild appreciates those who have worked on behalf of audiologists to improve our delivery model for best practices for the benefit of our patients.
Continuing Education Information
Tuesday, December 9th 2014
Valeria Schmauch is the Continuing Education Administrator for both MSHA sponsored and ASHA sponsored CEUs
State licensure requires 40 hours of continuing education every odd year, and ASHA certification requires 30 hours during each 3-year certification maintenance interval. MSHA sponsored CEUs follow the same standard set by ASHA.
Anyone interested in organizing workshops and wish to provide documented attendance and offer CEUs, contact Valeria at email@example.com and she will send you the necessary forms for documentation. Note that this can take up to 60 days!
Feel free to contact Valeria if you have any questions related to CEUs.
MSHA Memorial Scholarship Application
Wednesday, March 12th 2014
This scholarship is available to MSHA members who are graduate students (currently enrolled or admitted for Fall 2014) and planning to work in Montana upon graduation.
Online Speech Therapy Provider Wins Achievement Award from MSHA
Tuesday, February 25th 2014
Montana Speech and Hearing Association presents Achievement Award to TinyEYE Therapy Services
Currently in North America, high demand for speech therapy services combined with a short supply of speech therapy professionals has strained resources to service all students equitably. An estimated 300,000 children in North America currently have no access to much-needed speech therapy services due to geographic, social and economic conditions. TinyEYE Therapy Services advocates that children should have equal access to quality speech therapy, regardless of barriers.
"TinyEYE is an excellent partner in providing speech and language therapy services to our rural community. They are willing to provide services and have trained Montana SLPs on how to conduct telepractice. TinyEYE's agenda is clearly to bring speech and language therapy to those in need, which aligns with goals of the Montana Speech-Language Hearing Association membership. We look forward to a continued relationship with them." Says Jennifer Closson, MSHA President Elect.
The criterion for recognition looks for a major contribution to the profession and the communicatively impaired. Their devotion and effort must far exceed recognized standards of performance. MSHA members are very thoughtful with nominations for Honors. It is highly unusual for an organization or company such as TinyEYE to receive a MSHA award. According to Past MSHA President, Diane Simpson, "I have looked through the records and since 1957; MSHA has only recognized 15 organizations/companies for awards."
"We would like to thank MSHA for recognizing TinyEYE as being worthy of the Achievement Award for our passion and commitment to providing quality services to children with communication needs. We appreciate you and we at TinyEYE need you to help us continue our passionate efforts in reaching every child who needs and deserves the talents and expertise of Speech Therapists across the globe." says award recipient David Rubinstein, National Account Executive at TinyEYE.
Important Information Relating To The 18 X 18 Movement
Friday, June 28th 2013
Many of you have already seen the attached letter from AAO-HNS to its active ENT Advocate Members regarding AAO-HNS' decision and rationale for supporting H.R. 2330: The Medicare Audiology Services Enhancement Act of 2013, but for those of you who have not, we wanted to make you aware of the communication. We believe that the letter clearly articulates AAO-HNS' true motivation for supporting H.R. 2330 and provides a great deal of insight into their thought process.
The bill contains provisions that will substantially impede Medicare patient access to safe, efficient audiologic care and create excessive, unwarranted and costly physician involvement in the performance of audiologic services provided by licensed audiologists. Please take the following link to read ADA's full statement regarding H.R. 2330: http://www.audiologist.org/ada-opposes-h-r-2330.
ADA is working diligently to ensure that H.R. 2330 is not adopted by Congress now or in the future, preserving both the best interests of our patients and our profession. There is no need to contact your Congressman directly about HR 2330 yet- but please stand ready. We will keep you posted as things progress and will let you know precisely if/when that action is needed. For now, if you are a member of ASHA, please do contact them and share your frustration about their advocacy efforts that have resulted in the introduction of the bill. Please also feel free to forward this communication to any other audiology organization to which you belong.
It has never been more important to advocate for audiology and its future as a doctoring profession. Please tell your friends and colleagues about 18x18 and and ADA , and encourage them to get involved in this critical movement!
Please contact me anytime if you have any questions, or if I can assist you in any way.
MSHA Graduation Reception Pictures (UPDATE)
Wednesday, June 19th 2013
The MSHA Graduation reception pictures are online, available here.
SMAC/STAR report from Carol Morse regarding coding and medicare reimbursements is available as an Adobe .pdf download here.
Montana Audiology Guild Spring Conference Business Notes
Wednesday, May 29th 2013
The 2013 MAG Spring Conference was held at Chico May 3rd and 4th. Nikolas Klakow and Dawn Ruley were invited presenters from Phonak. MAG members were updated on the latest hearing aid and wireless classroom technology. The MAG business meeting was held on Saturday, May 4th. Members were updated on the status of the HAD Board, audiology speakers for MSHA Fall Convention in October, and legislation, both current and proposed.
Two pieces of legislation are being proposed by Al Yonovitz for 2015. During the business meeting, he presented his idea to "sunset" hearing aid dispensers in MT, as well as his proposal to create the Montana Office of Hearing Services. Under this plan, a state subsidy program would exist for hearing evaluations and hearing aids for MT citizens. Both legislative proposals sparked lively discussion among those MAG members present.
These legislative initiatives would have significant impact on audiology practices, and MAG members agreed that much more input from stakeholders around the state was needed! For more details, download the MAG Business Notes here.
Wednesday, May 29th 2013
Lexington, Kentucky -March came in like a lion as the Illinois Academy of Audiology (ILAA) and the Kentucky Academy of Audiology (KAA) boards signed official proclamations endorsing and supporting audiology's 18x18 Initiative to:
Amend Title XVIII (18) of the Social Security Act to provide for the treatment of audiologists as physicians for purposes of furnishing audiology services under the Medicare Program, to provide for a broadened scope of audiology services available for coverage under the Medicare program and to enable Medicare beneficiaries to have their choice of qualified audiologist -and to achieve this by the year 2018.
In addition to ILAA and KAA, the members of the Academy of Doctors of Audiology (ADA), the Georgia Academy of Audiology (GAA), the South Carolina Academy of Audiology (SCAA) and the Audiological Resource Association (ARA) have officially proclaimed support of and endorsed initiatives to advance audiology's 18x18 Initiative.
"The remarkable support for audiology's 18X18 Initiative has given March Madness a whole new meaning," said ADA President-elect, Brian Urban, Au.D. "It is reassuring to know that after thoughtful discussion and deliberation both ILAA and KAA, determined that the 18x18 legislative agenda will provide the most effective outcomes for taxpayers and Medicare recipients, while supporting the autonomous practice of audiology as consistent with other doctoring professions. We look forward to working with them and their members to achieve 18x18, for our patients and our profession!"
The proposed 18 by 18 legislation, if enacted, would: Allow audiologists the autonomy to make clinical recommendations and practice the full scope of audiology and vestibular care as allowed by their state license and as dictated by their educational requirements and competencies.
Eliminate the need for the physician order required for a Medicare beneficiary to receive coverage of medically necessary, covered audiology and vestibular services
Allow for Medicare coverage of medically necessary, covered treatment services such as vestibular rehabilitation, cerumen removal, and aural rehabilitation provided by an audiologist practicing within their state defined scope of practice.
18X18 is bigger than ADA or any single organization and its success hinges on the active support and sacrifice of the entire audiology community. If you or your organization, would like more information about how to get involved in advancing the 18x18 movement, please contact Stephanie Czuhajewski at firstname.lastname@example.org.
About ADA and 18X18 Established in 1977, the Academy of Doctors of Audiology (ADA) is the only national organization dedicated to audiologists in autonomous practice. ADA and its members strive to epitomize practitioner excellence, high ethical standards, professional autonomy and sound business practices in the provision of quality audiologic care. For more information, visit http://www.audiologist.org.
18X18 is a national audiology initiative that seeks to amend Title 18 of the Social Security Act by 2018 to provide for the treatment of audiologists as physicians for purposes of furnishing audiology services under the Medicare Program, to provide for a broadened scope of audiology services available for coverage under the Medicare program and to enable Medicare beneficiaries to have their choice of qualified audiologist. To learn more about the 18X18 Initiative and how you can help achieve it, visit www.audiologist.org/events48/18x18-webinar.