What is the impact of lockdown on access to Speech and Language Therapy? Part 1

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The recent RCSLT survey (https://www.talkingmats.com/rcslt_survey/) has been aimed at finding out how access to Speech and Language Therapy was affected by the first COVID-19 lockdown, from March 2020 to June 2020.  This has now come to an end, and the results are due to be published next month.

Given that we are now in our third lockdown as a result of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, we are pleased to announce that RCSLT will continue to be gathering Talking Mats examples up until the end of June 2021.  These examples should be focusing on the current lockdown (January – March 2021).  We would love to hear about the responses you have been getting from the children, young people, and adults who access your Speech and Language Therapy services.  Remember it is possible to use these resources during remote sessions by holding the mat up to the screen.

The Talking Mats RCSLT survey sets comprise of 3 topics:

  1. Face-to-Face

For those of us who are able to deliver face-to-face Speech and Language Therapy sessions, we find ourselves continuing to don PPE, and use social distancing.  What has been the impact of this on those we are working with?   The topscale we recommend for all the topics in this set is ‘Happy with/ Not Sure/ Not Happy With’.

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2.   Online

 Many Speech and Language Therapy sessions are now being delivered online, using platforms such as Attend Anywhere/Near Me, or Teams/Zoom.  What has been the impact of this on those we are working with?

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3. My Life

This final topic focuses on the more general area of ‘My Life’.  What has been the impact of this current lockdown on the general quality of life experienced by those we are working with, and what are their thoughts for the future?  This can help to open up the conversation in relation to their communication and/or dysphagia needs.

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We recommend that those using this resource have accessed our Talking Mats Foundation training.   Ideally the mats should be carried out by someone other than the SLT to avoid any skewing of responses, however we understand that this is not always possible, and so if the SLT has carried out a session themselves, we would suggest that this is noted in the feedback form.

Watch out for the second part of this blog which will focus on providing some real-life examples for each of the above topics.  If you have any you would like to share with us, we would love to hear from you.

For further guidance on how to use this resource, follow this link: https://www.rcslt.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/12/TM-20201008-TM-RCSLT-guidance-text.pdf

 Find the feedback form which you can use to submit your responses to RCSLT here: TM RCSLT TM feedback form

 

 

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