Influence of the COVID-19 pandemic on telepractice in speech-language pathology

J Prev Interv Community. 2021 Apr-Jun;49(2):152-162. doi: 10.1080/10852352.2021.1908210. Epub 2021 Apr 10.

Abstract

Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, speech-language pathology telepractice was used by a small percentage of consumers. The 2020 pandemic necessitated the transition of most services to an online format. This article reports on a brief, electronic survey that was completed by 145 speech-language pathologists (SLPs) during the early months (June 2020) of the pandemic. Results showed that the majority of SLPs will continue using a telepractice model into 2021 and beyond, as more than half of SLPs rated the quality as similar to services delivered in-person. The absence of earlier preparation, access to and hindrances with technology, and client factors were the main elements influencing telepractice success for SLPs. However, telepractice was rated as an efficient means of consultation, evaluation, and intervention and survey results revealed that 53.84% of SLPs plan on maintaining this modality at a higher than pre-pandemic level.

Keywords: COVID-19; speech-language pathology; telepractice; therapy.

MeSH terms

  • COVID-19*
  • Humans
  • Pandemics*
  • SARS-CoV-2
  • Speech Disorders / therapy
  • Speech-Language Pathology*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Telemedicine*
  • United States