Speech pathology telepractice for children with cleft palate in the times of COVID-19 pandemic.
International Journal of Pediatric Otorhinolaryngology
OBJECTIVE: To study whether providing Speech and Language Pathology (SLP) interventions by telepractice (TP) could effectively improve speech performance in children with cleft palate (CCP).
METHODS: Forty-three CCP were treated with TP intervention in 45 min sessions, 2 times per week for a period of one month. Children ages ranged 4-12 years (X = 7.04; SD = 2.59). All children presented with velopharyngeal insufficiency (VPI) and compensatory articulation (CA) after palatal repair. TP was provided in small groups (5-6 children) following the principles of the Whole Language Model (WLM). Severity of CA was evaluated by a standardized scale at the onset and at the end of the TP period.
RESULTS: At the onset of the TP intervention period, 84% of the patients demonstrated severe CA. At the end of the TP period there was a significant improvement in severity of CA (p < 0.001).
CONCLUSION: The results of this study suggests that TP can be a safe and reliable tool for improving CA. Considering that the COVID-19 pandemic will radically modify the delivery of Health Care services in the long term, alternate modes of service delivery should be studied and implemented.
Pamplona MDC, Ysunza PA, Telich-Tarriba J, Chávez-Serna E, Villate-Escobar P, Sterling M, Cardenas-Mejia A. Diagnosis and treatment of speech disorders in children with Moebius syndrome. Int J Pediatr Otorhinolaryngol. 2020 Nov;138:110316. doi: 10.1016/j.ijporl.2020.110316. Epub 2020 Aug 15. PMID: 32829202.