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Telepractice Services

K. Todd Houston, PhD, CCC-SLP, LSLS Cert AVT

October 15, 2018

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Question

How do I know if my organization or workplace is ready to use telepractice services?

Answer

If you are considering telepractice for your organization/workplace there are several things to consider before launching this type of program. 

Who will deliver these services? Is it going to be a speech-language pathologist? Is it going to be someone with a great deal of experience or someone with less experience?

Training needs of the telepractitioners. How are you going to train people to deliver telepractice services? We do need more training institutions and training programs. While there are colleges and universities that are incorporating telepractice training and exposure into their SLP graduate programs, currently, there are a limited number of training opportunities for individuals who already have their CCCs or who are practicing in the field. If you are interested in developing in-depth telepractice training for professionals in the field, please reach out to me, because I'm eager to work with others who want to set up those kinds of opportunities. 

Management support and buy-in. Do you have "buy-in" from management? Do the decision-makers and the key stakeholders support your efforts to launch telepractice? Do they understand what telepractice is and the flexibility that it will provide you as a clinician, as well as your clientele? Do they see that this could be a way to meet some unmet needs in the field or unmet needs of the potential patients that you could serve? Support and buy-in from management are going to be critical to getting your telepractice off the ground.

Patient/Client support and buy-in. Do your patients have an interest in the telepractice option being available to them? Do they know what telepractice is and the potential benefits it could provide to them? It's important to make sure that everyone is on the same page, and you have that level of buy-in from everyone on staff. 

Facility requirements (physical space and privacy). What type of physical space within your facility will you use to deliver your telepractice services? It needs to be an area free of distractions from behind because when you're sitting at the computer, your clients will be able to see you and everything behind you. Do you have adequate lighting? Do you have enough privacy and security to make sure that the services you deliver can remain confidential? You need to maintain the same level of privacy delivering services via telepractice that you would provide in person. If you work in a hospital or center, you have to keep things confidential. Do you have a room that can be secure and private?

Availability of technical support. Do you have technical support available if there are issues that come up with technology equipment? For example, if the audio or video goes out on the computer, you will require some type of troubleshooting and technical support to be able to fix and resolve the issue. I strongly suggest you think through that before launching into telepractice, because I can guarantee you that at some point, things break. Technology will need repair, updating and eventual replacement. You need that tech support in place.

Please refer to the SpeechPathology.com course, Connecting to Communicate: Designing Telepractice Services, for more in-depth information on fundamental technological requirements as well as other preparatory strategies practitioners can employ prior to launching a successful telepractice program.


k todd houston

K. Todd Houston, PhD, CCC-SLP, LSLS Cert AVT

K. Todd Houston, PhD, CCC-SLP, LSLS Cert. AVT is a Professor, speech-language pathologist, and a Listening and Spoken Language Specialist (LSLS) Certified Auditory-Verbal Therapist (Cert. AVT). For more than 20 years, his professional focus has been serving young children with hearing loss and their families who are learning to listen and acquire spoken language. Over the past decade, Dr. Houston has incorporated telepractice into his service delivery and continues to provide direct services each week, both in-person and through telepractice, to young children with hearing loss and their families. He has authored/edited three recent books through Plural Publishing: Telepractice In Speech-Language Pathology (2014), Assessing Listening and Spoken Language in Children with Hearing Loss (with Dr. Tamala Bradham, 2015), and Telepactice In Audiology (with Dr. Emma Rushbrooke, 2016). 


Related Courses

Telepractice: Using Distance Technology to Connect, Communicate, & Enhance Language Learning in Young Children with Hearing Loss
Presented by K. Todd Houston, PhD, CCC-SLP, LSLS Cert AVT
Video

Presenter

K. Todd Houston, PhD, CCC-SLP, LSLS Cert AVT
Course: #7948Level: Introductory1 Hour
  'I enjoyed seeing the child's gains over several video sessions'   Read Reviews
The use of distance technology continues to evolve, and new models of service delivery are emerging to meet the developmental and communicative needs of young children with speech, language, and listening needs. For young children born with hearing loss, telepractice service delivery models may be the most efficient way to connect families seeking services to well-trained professionals who can provide appropriate early intervention.

Connecting to Communicate: Defining Telepractice
Presented by K. Todd Houston, PhD, CCC-SLP, LSLS Cert AVT
Video

Presenter

K. Todd Houston, PhD, CCC-SLP, LSLS Cert AVT
Course: #8368Level: Intermediate1 Hour
  'The information was well thought out and presented in a way that was easy to follow'   Read Reviews
This is Part 1 of the three-part series, Connecting to Communicate: A Telepractice Series. What is telepractice? How is it different from telemedicine, telehealth, or connected health? Why are schools, hospitals, and other facilities utilizing distance technology to provide diagnostic and treatment interventions for individuals with communication disorders across the lifespan? In this course, telepractice will be defined and examples of telepractice service delivery models will be described. Current professional standards and other policies that shape telepractice service delivery also will be presented.

Connecting to Communicate: Designing Telepractice Services
Presented by K. Todd Houston, PhD, CCC-SLP, LSLS Cert AVT
Video

Presenter

K. Todd Houston, PhD, CCC-SLP, LSLS Cert AVT
Course: #8369Level: Intermediate1 Hour
  'I loved how the speaker demonstrated to read books to a child and what technology would help so the child can see the pages'   Read Reviews
This is Part 2 of the three-part series, Connecting to Communicate: A Telepractice Series. How do I get started in telepractice? How do I know my clients or patients will benefit from telepractice services? What is the best technology to use? How do I structure telepractice services in relation to traditional, in-person services? In this course, quantitative and qualitative measures used in decision making will be described that will allow practitioners to evaluate the feasibility of telepractice services. A basic "getting started" checklist will be reviewed that outlines the fundamental technological requirements as well as other preparatory strategies practitioners can employ prior to launching a successful telepractice program.

Connecting to Communicate: Delivering Telepractice Services
Presented by K. Todd Houston, PhD, CCC-SLP, LSLS Cert AVT
Video

Presenter

K. Todd Houston, PhD, CCC-SLP, LSLS Cert AVT
Course: #8370Level: Intermediate1 Hour
  'Looking forward to the importance of telepractice in the field of speech / language pathology'   Read Reviews
This is Part 3 of the three-part series, Connecting to Communicate: A Telepractice Series. Structuring successful telepractice services requires planning and “buy-in” from the patients or clients being served. Practitioners must know the unique diagnostic and/or treatment needs of those on their caseload and how these needs can be met using distance technology. This course will address the “how-to” of delivering telepractice services. Telepractice case studies will be discussed. Strategies for evaluating telepractice programs also will be presented.

The AUDacity of Listening: Early Intervention for Children with Hearing Loss
Presented by K. Todd Houston, PhD, CCC-SLP, LSLS Cert AVT
Video

Presenter

K. Todd Houston, PhD, CCC-SLP, LSLS Cert AVT
Course: #8068Level: Introductory1 Hour
  'Such positive information related about a condition-even those children with profound losses-that indicate much more successful outcomes and better quality of life'   Read Reviews
Today, infants and toddlers with hearing loss have more opportunities than ever to achieve listening and spoken language outcomes that are on par with their hearing peers. With early identification, early intervention, the use of appropriate hearing technology, and the active involvement of parents and caregivers, professionals can support and facilitate these outcomes through the use of Auditory-Verbal Therapy.