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General Information

Role of the Speech Pathologist

A speech pathologist has trained at university to assess and treat people who have difficulties with communication or swallowing.

Communication includes talking, reading, writing, listening and understanding as well as using other methods such as signing or gestures.

Common swallowing difficulties may include coughing or choking with meals or drinks and trouble clearing food from your mouth or throat.   These difficulties can result in many serious conditions such as weight loss and chest infections.

Speech pathologists will assess the condition in detail and provide strategies or treatment to manage the problem.

Most importantly, speech pathologists advocate strongly for the appropriate care and services for people with swallowing and communication disabilities.

Speech Pathologists Working in a Hospital Setting

Speech pathologists in a hospital setting work in a variety of ways including providing individual therapy, working in small groups, providing resources and information, as well as giving advice and direction to clients, their carers and other professionals.   Services are provided to patients staying in hospital or coming in to different outpatient clinics.

Last updated: 1 August 2013