Frequently Asked Questions
about the NBC-HIS and IHS Affiliation Agreement
What is the affiliation agreement adopted by the International Hearing Society (IHS) Board of Governors and the National Board for Certification in Hearing Instrument Sciences (NBC-HIS) Executive Council?
The agreement brings together each organization’s complementary expertise under one roof and one staff. It also allows IHS to render administrative and operational services to the National Board for Certification in Hearing Instrument Sciences.
Is this a merger of IHS and NBC-HIS?
No, this is only an affiliation agreement. Both organizations remain separate, with their own governing bodies, bylaws, accounting, and budgets. The affiliation allows both organizations to utilize one staff team, with IHS managing both organizations’ business operations.
What initiated the agreement? Why come together now?
Both organizations believe that with the onset of rapid changes in the marketplace, technology and delivery modes, it is essential to direct the strengths of each group toward the common goal of elevating and assisting hearing aid dispensing professionals. We can accomplish more together than we can apart—and offer both board certificants and IHS members the best in education and tools to help our customers best position themselves in the marketplace. This ultimately benefits those with hearing challenges, who are served by board certificants and IHS members.
What are the benefits of this agreement to NBC-HIS certificants? To IHS members?
IHS’ and NBC-HIS’ combined experience and shared vision means both are well positioned to provide elevated services and products to support hearing healthcare professionals worldwide. This affiliation represents a strengthened relationship of two groups whose ultimate goal is assisting hearing aid dispensing professionals in their pursuit of lifelong education to better serve people suffering from hearing challenges.
Where can I view the full press release?
The full press release is available here.
Did NBC-HIS’ or IHS’ offices move?
IHS is still located in the same office in Livonia, Michigan. NBC-HIS is now co-located with IHS. NBC-HIS’ new address is now 16880 Middlebelt Road, Suite 4, Livonia, MI 48154. Telephone and fax numbers remain unchanged for both organizations.
What is the staff organizational structure for IHS and NBC-HIS?
We’ve prepared an organizational chart. You can download it here.
Does this agreement change anything about NBC-HIS’ accreditation?
The affiliation agreement has no impact on the accreditation process or status. NBC-HIS is accredited through the Institute for Credentialing Excellence. NBC-HIS follows the guidelines of the NCCA standards for the accreditation of certification programs, which includes the separation of power amongst boards and staff. NCCA’s accreditation recognizes and provides public notification that the certifying program is committed to self-study and external review by one’s peers, meets standards, and seeks continuous improvement to maintain the quality of examination and certification of its constituent professionals.
How does the affiliation affect IHS membership or IHS’ other products and services?
The affiliation agreement does not change the way customers become board certified, nor the way a board certificant maintains their certification. Certificants will still contact NBC-HIS directly for any questions or issues pertaining to board certification, including updating one’s contact information with NBC-HIS. Certificants will not experience a disruption in service. However, they will experience greater service levels and will be able to avail themselves of new tools and products as a result of the new affiliation. Board certificants should also note that NBC-HIS is now co-located with IHS at 16880 Middlebelt Road, Ste. 4, Livonia, MI 48154 USA. NBC-HIS’ other contact information remains the same.
Am I automatically an IHS member if I’m board certified?
Board certification does not automatically confer IHS membership on an individual—neither does IHS membership automatically confer board certification. IHS serves the interests of hearing aid dispensing professionals and welcomes board certificants to join with the only Society that represents them. Please visit IHS at www.ihsinfo.org to learn more or to join the Society.
If I need to change my name, address, phone number or other contact information with both NBC-HIS and IHS, do I still need to contact both organizations?
Yes, NBC-HIS and IHS maintain separate customer database’s and processes for maintaining customer data. You may change your contact information with one organization, but it will not transfer to the other’s database. The good news is that because we are now located in the same building, your phone calls can be easily transferred from IHS to NBC-HIS staff and back again, so staff from both groups can assist you with one call. Customers may also wish to email contact information changes to NBC-HIS at email@example.com, and to IHS at firstname.lastname@example.org. IHS members may also update their contact information online after logging in at www.ihsinfo.org.
Who is IHS?
The International Hearing Society (IHS) is a membership association that represents hearing healthcare professionals worldwide. IHS members are engaged in the practice of testing human hearing and selecting, fitting and dispensing hearing instruments and counseling patients. Founded in 1951, the Society continues to recognize the need for promoting and maintaining the highest possible standards for its members in the best interests of the hearing impaired it serves. As the membership organization for thousands of independent specialists, IHS conducts programs in competency accreditation, education and training and encourages specialty-level programs for its members. For more information call 734.522.7200 or visit www.ihsinfo.org.
Who is NBC-HIS?
The National Board for Certification in Hearing Instrument Sciences (NBC-HIS) is an independent, non-profit, credentialing organization, established to promote continuing competency assurance of hearing health professionals and to provide a standard of excellence in hearing health care for the consumer. Founded in 1981, NBC-HIS was created to establish a standardized test for measuring the competency of hearing health professionals. It is the only board certification program in the hearing healthcare industry accredited by the National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA). In an age of ever-changing hearing technology there is a need for a standard of excellence. NBC-HIS strives to set and uphold those standards through innovative thinking and a commitment to excellence for the benefit of the hearing-impaired consumer. For more information call 734.522.2900 or visit www.nbc-his.com.