Dr. Rita Chaiken elected to serve as ADA’s president-elect for the 2014-2015

Drs. Chaiken, Spoor and Nileshwar to Serve ADA Membership

The Academy of Doctors of Audiology (ADA) is pleased to announce that Rita Chaiken, Au.D., has been elected to serve as ADA’s president-elect for the 2014-2015 program year. “It is a great honor to be elected by my peers to serve as president-elect of the organization that is advocating for our profession in such a meaningful way,” said Dr. Chaiken. “I am committed to helping ADA advance its mission to ensure best practices and professional autonomy throughout the profession of audiology.”

Dr. Chaiken currently serves as a consultant for Atlanta Hearing Associates, a private practice with four locations in Georgia. She is a leading expert in cerumen management and travels extensively providing training for students and audiologists alike. Dr. Chaiken is an Adjunct Professor of Audiology at Salus University and was named the 2014 Salus University College of Audiology Alumnus of the Year. Her previous experience includes founding a private audiology practice, which she owned and operated for 12 years. Dr. Chaiken also served as a regional manager for a hearing instrument manufacturer for three years. Dr. Chaiken has been a member of ADA since 1981 and a member of the ADA Board of Directors since 2010, where she currently serves as Secretary.

Alicia Spoor, Au.D., has been re-elected to the ADA Board of Directors to serve as a Director-at-Large. Dr. Spoor is employed at A&A Hearing Group, a private practice with seven locations throughout Maryland. Dr. Spoor also serves as the Chair of the Audiology Quality Consortium (AQC), a coalition of 10 audiology member organizations committed to collaborate on the development, monitoring and implementation of audiology quality measures for use in the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS) and with other health care payers.

Ram Nileshwar, Au.D. has been elected to the ADA Board of Directors to serve as a Director-at-Large. Dr. Nileshwar is the President and founder of The Hearing Center of Lake Charles in Lake Charles, Louisiana where he as practiced for nearly three decades.

Incoming board members and officers will be installed to their new positions at ADA’s Annual Membership Meeting to be held at the ADA Annual Convention on Friday, November 7th, at 4:35 p.m. at the Red Rock Resort in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Why A Professional Audiologist Can Help More Than Big Box Stores

When you are faced with a hearing problem, you have two choices nowadays.  First, you can go to a big box store, take an out-of-the-bag hearing test on a machine you don’t know for sure has been calibrated properly, and you can buy cheap no-good merchandise from an untrained worker that will cost you more in the long ran.  But, second, you can go to a professional audiologist and get a highly effective hearing test and get high quality products that last a long time and actually cost you less in the end.


A hearing aid at Costco or WalMart will cost you less, but their quality is really low.  They offer products that are mass produced have been subjected to very little testing for quality.  On the other hand, if you go to a professional audiologist, you’ll get a product that was meticulously made and rigorously tested in order to give the client the best hearing aid product possible. The products cost less, but they have lower quality at a big box store.


When you go to a big box store for hearing aids or hearing aid batteries, the cost is all yours.  You assume that the products will work, if you bring defective products back they may not be reimbursable, and you find that the batteries you bought might or might not work for a few hours.  They don’t even offer rechargeable batteries that last more than two or three rechargings.

But the professional audiologist will give you a product that last a long time, cutting your overall long-term costs.  And most of the stuff the professional audiologist gives you are covered by most insurance plans.  Therefore, you can actually save money when working with a professional audiologist.


Big box stores train their audiology workers with the reading of a short manual that is more concerned with how to sell a hearing aid than in understanding what a hearing aid actually does. Most of these workers can’t tell you the different parts of the ear and how each can have problems that cause hearing difficulties in different ways.  An audiologist is professionally trained to tell you the different parts of the ear and how each can affect hearing.

When an audiologist tells you your hearing problems can be fixed or corrected or helped, he isn’t telling you this to sell you a particular product.  A big box store worker is just trying to make the sale.

In conclusion, you should go see a professional audiologist who understands hearing, hearing aid products, and wants to help you.  Don’t buy hearing products from a big box store bent on making money off of your misery.

NAIPC Endorses the Audiology Patient Choice Act—H.R. 5304

The National Aging in Place Council (NAIPC), a non-profit organization, dedicated to providing information and resources that will help seniors remain independent, has endorsed the Audiology Patient Choice Act, and has featured ADA’s Secretary, Rita Chaiken, Au.D., and this landmark legislation in a recent notice to members.

Read the notice here.

“The endorsement of the Audiology Patient Choice Act by NAIPC, a respected leading advocate for senior citizens, is indeed compelling,” said Dr. Chaiken. “It speaks directly to the indisputable need to bring Medicare in line with today’s best practices in the delivery of hearing and balance healthcare services. I am confident that the NAIPC endorsement will help make the case for Congress to make the common-sense changes necessary to ensure that older Americans receive exceptional, efficient and cost-effective audiologic care.”

The Audiology Patient Choice Act, introduced in the 113th Congress by Representative Lynn Jenkins (R-KS) and Representative Matt Cartwright (D-PA), will:

  • Improve access to qualified, licensed Medicare providers, by allowing seniors with a suspected hearing or balance disorder to seek treatment directly from audiologists, eliminating archaic medical doctor referral requirements.
  • Allow patients to choose among qualified providers for Medicare-covered audiologic services by authorizing Medicare to reimburse audiologists for the Medicare-covered services that they are licensed to provide. These services are already covered by Medicare when delivered by other providers.
  • Address the medical doctor workforce shortage confronting our country, while helping to meet the increasing demand for health care services by the growing Medicare population, through the inclusion of audiologists in the list of Medicare-recognized physicians (chiropractors, dentists, doctors of osteopathy, medical doctors, optometrists and podiatrists).


The National Aging in Place Council (NAIPC) is the primary source of information and resources for seniors seeking to remain active and healthy throughout their retirement years. It has established a network of professionals from the private, public and non-profit sectors who help them plan for future housing and care needs. NAIPC advocates for policies, regulations and business practices that promote Aging in Place. NAIPC released an Aging in Place Planning Guide, which is an indispensable resource for senior citizens. Visit www.ageinplace.org for more information.

For more information about the Audiology Patient Choice Act, please visit www.18×18.org:

3D Printing Making Waves with Hearing Aids

Sounds too weird to be true, doesn’t it? 3D printers emitting customized hearing aids? Why yes! This type of printing is making waves in the hearing aid industry, also known as additive manufacturing. This entails adding to a product layer by layer rather than cutting away at it with tools like lathes. It’s used in [...]

[Continue reading…]

Eat Fish, Dark Chocolate and Citrus to Stave off Hearing Loss as You Age

Fish, dark chocolate and citrus fruits are just a few of the super foods touted as being excellent  for your hearing health. Of course, many of these foods are also good for other systems of your body, but your ears form the main benefits. Don’t fall victim to a natural decline in hearing loss as [...]

[Continue reading…]

Capitol Idea: AuDvocates Take to the Hill to Advance the Audiology Patient Choice Act


As this reaches you, ADA volunteers are on Capitol Hill meeting with Congressional staff to secure co-sponsors for the Audiology Patient Choice Act, and to advocate for a Senate companion bill. “Today we will attend more than 75 meetings with key Congressional offices to advocate for H.R. 5304, which if enacted, will provide better access [...]

[Continue reading…]

New Studies Link Hearing Loss and Depression

For people with hearing loss, it is more important than ever to begin keeping track of any changes in your thoughts or feelings. This advice comes after the researchers at a prestigious institute have found that there is a link and a correlation between people with hearing loss and people who suffer from depression. In [...]

[Continue reading…]