As far as survival of the independent practitioner, Clayton Christensen's model suggests that, in our case, the disruptive innovation is not the “corporatization of audiology,” rather the disruptive force is the failure of audiologists to unite to help themselves when confronted with extinction.
There was a time when audiologists thought that they owned the hearing aid marketplace. Our growing private offices and our new AuD degrees would be the solution to the public's malaise and lack of appreciation for better hearing. Bam! What happened? The traditional audiology scope of hearing aid dispensing finds itself the victim of a number of unforeseeable and uncontrollable changes that we did not anticipate, and in fact, we stood by blindly watching the tsunami wave arrive. Obviously, we didn't see, or understand, the rampant growth of the converging forces chipping away at our position as the self-stated “owners of hearing health care.”
I deem the current unraveling hearing health-care delivery system as a serious problem for audiologists. I further believe the survival of the profession is at stake here.
…Academy Founder and Past President Jerry Northern, PhD (2014).