Massachusetts senator Elizabeth Warren said today that she was pushing to make hearing aids as easy to buy as eyeglasses. But Warren appeared to be bragging about a legislative win that actually took place over a year ago.
You can watch her announcement here:
Warren is not normally one to give out good news: the Massachussetts senator is most often heard railing against the president or critiquing her Republican colleagues in Congress. But today, Warren took to twitter to announce a small, but hopefully meaningful, accomplishment: it’s going to be a little bit easier for the hard of hearing to get help.
“Washington is deeply broken, but sometimes we can still work together to get things done,” Warren wrote. The Massachusetts senator said that her bill — which would remove the need to go through a doctor when buying a hearing aid — should improve the lives of millions of people, by making it easier for people to buy hearing aids over the counter.
Warren Has Been Talking About This Bill For a Long, Long Time
It’s not clear why Warren took to Twitter to talk about the hearing aid bill today. After all, the Senate passed the bill over a year ago, back in August 2017. The bipartisan Food and Drug Administration legislation bill included language, written by Warren, which made it possible for consumers to buy hearing aids without first consulting with an audiologist or other specialist.
The bill was hailed, at the time, as a rare bipartisan victory.
Warren has made healthcare reform one of her signature issues, often speaking about the need to improve ordinary people’s access to medicine and doctors. The Massachussetts senator is up for re-election this year, and her announcement about hearing aids may be an indication that she is courting the votes of senior citizens. Warren has also signaled that she is likely to run for president in 2020, although she has put off making an official announcement until at least November, after the mid-term elections.
On Friday, the FDA Authorized the Marketing of the First Over the Counter Hearing Aid
The law that allows people to buy hearing aids over the counter was passed over a year ago. But it wasn’t until a few days ago — on Friday, October 5 — that the FDA approved a device that ordinary people can buy and set up on their own.
The new device, a wireless hearing aid designed by Bose, is meant for use by people with mild to moderate hearing loss. It can be bought over the counter and set up by ordinary consumers; tehre’s no need to go to a specialist to be fitted with the device.
In a press release on Friday, Malvina Eydelman, director of the Division of Ophthalmic, and Ear, Nose and Throat Devices division at the FDA, hailed the new device. “Today’s marketing authorization provides certain patients with access to a new hearing aid that provides them with direct control over the fit and functionality of the device. The FDA is committed to ensuring that individuals with hearing loss have options for taking an active role in their health care,” Eydelman said.
Elizabeth Warren, who is known for her liberal positions on many issues, has been a strong supporter of “Obamacare” and has often criticized President Trump for his attempts at healthcare reform.
Warren is often mentioned as a likely Democraric front-runner. She is also one of the Democrats who President Trump loves to hate. Trump has often mocked Elizabeth Warren, calling her “Pocahantas” and jabbing at her liberal positions.