On March 18, 2019, Governor Murphy signed S746/A3045 into law. Initiated by longtime PGA client, the New Jersey Speech-Language Hearing Association (NJSHA), this legislation allows audiologists to dispense hearing aids by virtue of their audiology license without having to obtain a separate license to perform that function. Hearing aid dispensing is just one of many tests, evaluations, and treatments administered and performed by audiologists, but it is a critical and essential component of their practice. New Jersey has required audiologists to obtain a second license to dispense hearing aids for over forty years. During this time, education and technology have dramatically changed the field. Audiology is now a doctoral level profession and mandating the second license was unnecessary and burdensome.
The bill received unanimous support throughout the legislative process from committee hearing to passage by both houses. With the Governor’s signature, New Jersey becomes the 37th state to allow for single licensure of audiologists. PGA’s Lynn Nowak led the effort in the State House on behalf of NJSHA.