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BHI Unveils Hearing Aid Tax Credit Website
www.hearingaidtaxcredit.org

April 25, 2008


With the unveiling of www.hearingaidtaxcredit.org the Better Hearing Institute (BHI) in collaboration with the Hearing Industries Association (HIA) makes it easy for all Americans to send letters to their Senators and Representatives in support of tax credit legislation (HR2329/S1410). Our goal - millions of letters to the Hill in support of this legislation. We want to bring this issue to the attention of every Senator and Representative on the Hill. Letters from all hearing industry stakeholders, their customers, their patients and their readers will do that.

When someone visits www.hearingaidtaxcredit.org a push of a button enables them to send letters to your respective Senators and Representative. Here are some features of the Write Congress Now section of the website:

  1. By entering name, address and zip code the individual's correct Senators and Representative are identified and targeted.
  2. The individual has the option of personalizing the letter or using our form letter on the site.
  3. The individual is strongly encouraged to personalize the letter since a personal statement is much more powerful then the form letter.
  4. The individual can print the letters or email them.
  5. A thank you letter is automatically sent to the letter writer's email address.
  6. If the Senator or Representative is already a co-sponsor of the bill a thank you letter will be sent to them.
  7. The individual can email up to 10 friends about the bill with a push of a button.

How Can You Help?

  1. Inform all hearing aid users. For all hearing aid fittings provide a small message on the availability of this website to the patient. This message should be shown to the patient by the hearing health professional and placed in their hearing aid kit by either the manufacturer or hearing health professional. Our message is: Your Congressman and Senators are considering a proposal to provide you with a tax credit for hearing aid treatment. They need to hear that you support this idea now! Visit www.hearingaidtaxcredit.org. Here is a sample card to promote the website.
  2. Inform users of ALDS. Place the above message in all ALDs such as TV Ears or amplified telephones even if the individual is not a hearing aid user.
  3. Tell it on your website. We are asking all hearing health professionals, manufacturers and allied organizations to place on the front of their websites the message: Help pass hearing aid tax credit legislation now, with a link to www.hearingaidtaxcredit.org.
  4. Promote the site on your business card. Hearing health professionals should consider printing the tax credit message on the back of their business cards.
  5. Send your own eBlast. While the BHI has close to 20,000 eMail addresses to individuals in the hearing health industry, we encourage manufacturers and allied associations to eBlast their own email list about this site. In addition hearing health professionals should eBlast their patients.
  6. Do a post card campaign. Hearing health professionals are encouraged to print a postcard to send to all past customers. We have provided a suggested postcard design at the following link: http://old.betterhearing.org/professionals/HATC_Postcard.pdf
  7. Place an OpEd piece in your local newspaper. We have written a suggested OpEd piece for placement in your local newspaper. Hearing health professionals are permitted to modify this piece to promote their practice.
  8. Promote the website in your community. Using the message above see if you can get the message into your community at: physician offices, chiropractor offices, drug stores, food store bulletin boards, senior centers, assistive living and retirement communities, places of worship (newsletters, bulletin boards), day care centers, schools, places where boomers and seniors meet (golf courses, tennis clubs, bowling alley, etc); and of course talk about the website in your newsletter if you have one.
  9. Start a chain eMail. Most of us share jokes or cool Youtube videos with our entire network of friends and family. So why not share this initiative with your network especially those outside of the hearing health community? Hearing loss affects 1 in 4 households in America; so just about everyone knows somebody with an untreated hearing loss. Here is a suggested email: Hearing loss affects 1 in 4 households in America. Congress is considering a proposal to provide Americans with a tax credit for hearing aid treatment. They need to hear that you support this idea now! While passage of the tax credit bill may not impact you it could help a friend or relative of yours. Visit www.hearingaidtaxcredit.org and make your voice heard either for yourself or on behalf of a relative or friend. Please forward this email to at least 10 others who may benefit from this legislation.
  10. Get corporate awareness. If you currently do audiological screenings for corporations talk to the human resource executive to get an announcement in their corporate newsletter or for their bulletin board.
  11. Write your own professional letter. Using the template provided write a letter on behalf of your patients and be sure to say something personal about them which demonstrates their need for the bill. For some Senators and Representatives a printed letter will gain more attention then an email letter; though if you do not have time certainly email the letter.
  12. Issue a local press release. This is big news and many local editors will print your press release. In the press release use the opportunity to promote your practice. For source material see our press release on this topic: http://old.betterhearing.org/press/news/pr_taxcredit.cfm

If you have further ideas for promoting the hearing aid tax credit website let us know and we will share it with readers of this newsletter. (skochkin@betterhearing.org).

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