The International Hearing Society (IHS), Livonia, Mich, reports that Hearing Aid Specialists have achieved special recognition in the Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) for 2010.
Hearing Aid Specialists will now be identified as a detailed occupation under Healthcare Practitioner and Technical Occupations, subcategory Health Technologists and Technicians, with a unique identifying number. This important change in status was one of fewer than a dozen made to health professions.
Acting on IHS recommendations submitted to the Office of Management and Budget, the Standard Occupational Classification Policy Committee voted to accept the recommendation on the basis that Hearing Aid Specialist is a well-defined and measurable occupation.
The SOC is designed to reflect the current occupational structure of the United States, classifying all occupations in which work is performed for pay or profit. State and local government agencies are strongly encouraged to use this national system to promote a common language for categorizing and analyzing occupations.
The first classification advancement came in 2000, when the SOC reclassified Hearing Aid Specialists as an illustrative example in a residual grouping under the subcategory of Health Technologists and Technicians. Prior to 2000, Hearing Aid Specialists were not included in the SOC but, rather, hearing aid consultants and fitters were categorized under sales workers and hearing aid technicians were categorized under miscellaneous mechanics and repairers.
IHS represents hearing care professionals worldwide.