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Speech and Language Therapy

The Speech and language therapy department is dynamic and evolving and aims to keep up to date with current knowledge and best practice. We support people with their communication needs and Feeding, Eating and Drinking(FEDS)/Dysphagia needs, taking into account each individual’s unique profile and context.

Supporting a person’s communication skills plays a role in enhancing their independence and autonomy and building inclusive environments. Support from a Speech and Language Therapist can involve building the capacity of families and frontline staff to enable them to confidently support the person on a daily basis. This could involve Staff training or onsite coaching and mentoring. For others it may involve working with the person on an individual basis at critical periods of their life, for example, transitions and periods of physical or cognitive change.

In the case of Children’s Services access to Speech and Language Therapy support is via the Children’s Disability Network Team (CDNT) which covers the geographical region where a child and family reside. Referral to this service is through the Network Manager.

We support a total communication approach, where all means of communication are valued. Recognised systems such as Speech, LAMH, PECS, Low and High Tech Augmentative and Alternative communication (AAC) are explored as well as identifying a person’s individual way of communicating their message. We use visual supports and supportive communication environments to ensure a person’s life is meaningful and predictable. We are excited to continue this work in the implementation of the Assisted decision making and capacity act and the ongoing support of People exercising their rights.

Issues with Feeding, Eating, Drinking and Swallowing (FEDS) are common in people with an intellectual disability and support for these issues is vital for a person’s health and well-being. Assessment, individualised recommendations and Staff training underpin specific support for these difficulties. Interdisciplinary working with other Clinical professions such as Occupational Therapists and Dieticians provides comprehensive input as well as liaising with medical staff, where required.

Communication underpins many aspects of life, the Speech and Language therapy department collaborates on many projects. Some examples of these are the Digital and Accessible Technology (DAT) Project and Accessible Information.

Access to Support from the Speech and language therapy department is through a referral system. A referral can be made by the person themselves or on their behalf by a family or Staff member. Referral forms are available on the shared drive and from local service areas.

Enquiries can be made to:

Margaret McCormack – Head of Speech and Language Therapy Department
Phone (Roscommon Office): (090) 662 8500
Phone (Galway Office): (091) 721 400