President's Message

Message from the Texas Academy of Audiology President 2014

Cristen L. Plummer, AuD, CCC-A

Howdy All!

I am SO looking forward to this new year and serving as the President of the Texas Academy of Audiology!  Just a few years ago I was an audiologist with my “head in the sand” regarding the professional issues affecting my field.  When I became interested in serving on the TAA Board it was 2011 and the end of a Sunset Review year in the Texas Legislature. “A Sunset What???” is what I said, clueless of the behind-the-scenes work that goes on to keep our licensure  safe and our profession honorable.

I come from the same background as many of you, representing Audiology in Texas.  I too work with the people of Texas knee-to-knee every day, listening to their daily routines, struggles, successes and failures.  I cringe when I hear someone relay a sad story of being mistreated or uncared for by a  hearing aid provider or company, or tell of being denied for services for hearing aids.  It is difficult to hear of a denial of ANY choice in a person’s life that relates back to their hearing loss.  I feel quite compelled to take those stories to the Board and to discover new ways TAA can guide our Audiologists to provide safe and successful hearing healthcare for Texas.

This year will be our 15th Annual Conference and the theme is “Texas Audiology ROCKS!”  Since I reside in Austin, TX, the Live Music Capital of the World, I am proud to have our Texas Audiologists come to our city…where the MAGIC happens!  Our TAA Board and our Lobbyist Brad Shields have been meeting here and will continue to follow the hot-button topics and legislative issues already in the works that affect Texas Audiology.

The Texas Academy of Audiology is determined to grow our membership to stand united when we battle the threats to the future of audiology.  We are following the changes in Medicaid reimbursement and hoping to influence state policy makers to design an improved system in the coming months.  We are following closely the business practices of hiHealth Innovations and working with THAA to voice our concerns to our state licensing board and the dispenser’s committee to ultimately cease and desist their practicing audiology in Texas without a license.  We are watching our state licensing board as they work with the dispensers to answer SB 312’s requirement of joint language regarding telepractice in hearing aid fittings.  We are looking to legislators who will help us pass legislation for required hearing aid reimbursement for children by insurance companies.

All of these endeavors have been brought to the Board’s attention by YOU, the Texas Audiologists, and we are happy to work on them FOR YOU. 

I am the Texas Audiologist, as well.  I’m thankful I stepped out of my “test box”,  looked around at what was happening to Audiology, and decided to be a more active advocate. 

On behalf of myself and the TAA Board, we hope you will keep updated on our agenda and invite your non-member Audiology friends to join our professional family and ROCK it out this year, Audiology-Style!  With new members joining, old members becoming Board members, and a new partnership under discussion with the Scott Haug board, 2014 promises to be better than ever!

Texas Audiology ROCKS!

Cristen L. Plummer, AuD

TAA 2014 President

Presidents: Past, Present, and Future