Speech Pathology Week (22 – 28 August 2021) seeks to promote the speech pathology profession and the work done by speech pathologists with the 1.2 million Australians who have a communication or swallowing impairment. This year’s theme is ‘Communication is everyone’s right’.
Speech pathologists work to ensure everyone can communicate with confidence.
About Speech Pathology
Speech Pathologists’ assess, diagnose and treat communication disorders, including difficulties with communication, speaking, listening, understanding language, reading, writing, social skills, stuttering and using voice.
They work with people who have difficulty communicating for a range reasons, including developmental delay, stroke, brain injuries, learning disability, intellectual disability, cerebral palsy, dementia and hearing loss, as well as other problems that can affect speech and language.
People who experience difficulties swallowing food and drink safely can also be helped by a speech pathologist.
Speech Pathology and the NDIS
Many people with disability have goals in their NDIS plan that are centred around communication.
Brie King, Senior Speech Pathologist in Yooralla’s Allied Services and Wellbeing team has found that “NDIS goals are usually very broad.”
“Speech Pathologists then work with customers to create more specific short-term goals, that they will work towards for the duration of their NDIS plan,” Brie said.
“Some examples of broad NDIS goals our Speech Pathologists have seen in plans are:
- For X to develop his expressive and receptive language skills.
- For X to develop his social skills and interaction with his family and peers.
- For X to develop her communication skills, grammar and vocabulary so she is able to engage in conversations with her family and friends.
“When we are working with the customers to determine these short-term goals, Speech Pathologists will consider a customer’s current abilities and their prognosis - to set realistic expectations and timelines around achieving their NDIS goals.
“It is important to remember though, that communication is more than just speechWe [Speech pathologists] also support carers to identify what communication is, be it a smile, a body movement, a sound, looking at something or speech,” Brie said.
Speech Pathology at Yooralla
Yooralla’s Speech Pathologists diagnose and treat communication and swallowing difficulties in children and adults - supporting people to overcome communication difficulties such as challenges with speech (including support with Augmentative and Alternative Communication), understanding and/or using language, listening, social skills, stuttering, reading, writing and using voice.
Find out more about Therapy at Yooralla.
About Speech Pathology week
The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has highlighted the challenges faced by Australians with communication disability. Communication is a basic human right and Speech Pathology Week seeks to make Australians aware of this.
It is important that the broader community understands that:
- communication is a basic human right
- 1.2 million Australians live with communication disability
- communication disability is largely invisible. Unseen and out-of-sight
- confident communication helps maximise educational, health and social outcomes, and
- communication is more than just speech.
Find out more about Speech Pathology week.