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What does a Speech Pathologist do?

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Talent.com talent.com
Answered August 17 2021
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Speech Pathologists treat communication disorders associated with language and speech impediments. They are responsible for providing advice, education, and treatment to patients with fluency and voice problems.

Speech Pathologists usually work with children, but they may also work with adult patients when necessary. They deal with various speech disorders caused by different conditions such as head injuries, psychological trauma, neurological diseases, or oral problems. 

They can work in various contexts, such as schools, private practices, nursing homes, or hospitals. Some Speech Pathologists split their weeks, doing three days in a school and two days in private consultations. Indeed, the flexibility and portability of this career are what make it attractive. 

Speech Pathologists diagnose and treat a wide array of delays and disorders. This can include:
  • Speech delays and disorders
  • Language delays in children
  • Fluency disorders, which include stuttering
  • Swallowing and feeding disorders, whether in children or adults, particularly adults who have suffered from one or more strokes 
Roles and responsibilities of a Speech Pathologist
  • Provide patients and their relatives with the necessary advice and guidance on communication disorders.
  • Diagnose and evaluate communication and swallowing disorders through various specialized tests.
  • Create, apply, and monitor therapeutic plans based on test and examination results to treat various speech, language, voice, and swallowing disorders.
  • Maintain records on the patient's development and the quality and appropriateness of the remedial program to adjust treatment accordingly.
  • Coordinate a treatment plan with the patient, family, and other team members.
  • Monitor and keep track of patient's progress during treatment and after completion.
  • Document and file patients' profiles for referrals and follow-ups.
  • Conduct development and design studies for the diagnosis and treatment of communication disorders.
  • Attend interdisciplinary rounds, meetings, and quality initiatives of Speech-Language pathology, allied health, and other clinical/health programs.
  • Document tests and examinations, carrying out analytic procedures and publishing their observations.
  • Ensure that the equipment, devices, material, and other resources used to perform their work are fully functional.