Telecoil bill would help ALL Iowans have hearing access

Mary Dyer advocates for Iowans with hearing loss as a member of the state Deaf Services Commission. -promoted by desmoinesdem

Support House File 2141, the Telecoil Bill, approved by the Deaf Services Commission of Iowa. This bill would allow those with hearing loss to hear more clearly, ensuring continued involvement in civic and personal life.

How many people have hearing loss? About 20 percent (Johns Hopkins study, et al). Side effects may include depression, isolation, suicidal ideation, and higher risk of Altzheimer’s.

What is a telecoil? Hearing instruments can’t separate speech from confusing background noise. A telecoil can expand the functionality of your hearing instrument.

How does it work? A telecoil, installed in most hearing instruments, has a wireless antenna linking into a sound system to deliver customized sound to the listener.

What does HF 2141 do? Requires hearing instrument specialist to inform client at point of purchase of usages of telecoil. Client must sign document stating they received written copy of this information; hearing specialist must keep copy for length of warranty on hearing instrument.

Current Status of bill: Referred to House Human Resources Committee on January 30. At this writing, the bill has not been assigned to a subcommittee.

Addressing common concerns: This is a non-partisan bill. Hearing loss affects every demographic: gender, age, income, political party. This bill also needs no funding. The law, once enacted, is sent to the state licensing board governing hearing instrument specialists.

• Contact your representatives and ask them to support this bill
• Contact your friends and acquaintances
• Contact members of the House Human Resources Committee to show your support:

Joel Fry, Chair, R. Clarke 27
Michael Bergan, Vice Chair, R. Winneshiek 55
Beth Wessel-Kroeschell, Ranking Member., D. Story 45
Ako Abdul-Samad, D. Polk 35
Marti Anderson, D. Polk 36
Rob Bacon, R. Story 48
Brian Best, R. Carroll 12
Timi Brown-Powers, D. Black Hawk 61
Cecil Dolecheck, R. Ringgold 24
John Forbes, D. Polk 40
David E. Heaton, R. Henry 84
Lisa Heddens, D. Story 46
Steven Holt, R. Crawford 18
Bruce L. Hunter, D. Polk 34
Jon A. Jacobsen, R. Pottawattamie 22
Kevin Koester, R. Polk 38
Shannon Lundgren, R. Dubuque 57
Mary Mascher, D. Johnson 86
Tom Moore, R. Cass 21
Sandy Salmon, R. Black Hawk 63
Rob Taylor, R. Linn 44

Note: Fourteen Iowa House Democrats are co-sponsoring HF 2141: Art Staed, Mary Mascher, Jerry Kearns, Scott Ourth, Todd Taylor, Mary Gaskill, Mary Wolfe, Cindy Winckler, Vicki Lensing, Ruth Ann Gaines, Helen Miller, Amy Nielsen, Ras Smith, and Ako Abdul-Samad.

[prepared by Mary Dyer, Deaf Services Commissioner, mdyer@hasloopscom, Feb. 5, 2018]

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