The Effects of a Pandemic on Speech Therapy for Children

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Summers, Emma
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University Honors College, Middle Tennessee State University
The purpose of this study was to analyze the alterations and protocols the practice of speech-language pathology had to take to cope with the pandemic, specifically looking at the clinicians’ viewpoints throughout the transition. The participants included 50 school-based speech-language pathologists (SLPs) mostly from Tennessee. Each participant completed an online survey asking them 15 questions regarding telepractice and demographic information. Results indicated that SLPs specifically faced challenges with communicating with the client’s family in ways such getting them to participate, helping them navigate technology, and simply making contact with them. SLPs also reported challenges with holding their clients’ attention and effectively executing visual cues via Telepractice. Overall SLPs reported that they believe telepractice is not as effective as in-person sessions and that their clients’ progress was affected negatively.