Speech-Language Pathologists (SLP’s) are specialists in human communication, its normal development and its disorders. They are trained professionals who assess and treat speech, language, voice, fluency, cognitive, and other related communication disorders, as well as swallowing difficulties. A Speech Language Pathologist has a master’s degree (or equivalent) in their profession. They attended accredited university programs for 4 to 6 years to complete their formal education.
They provide services to overcome and prevent communication problems in the areas of language, speech, voice and fluency. Speech-Language Pathologists have the expertise to provide services in the areas of:
Prevention – foster community awareness of speech and language development and disorders through newsletters, newspaper articles, workshops and presentations
Early Identification – detect communication delays/disorders in young children through effective screening programs; work with families and professionals to raise awareness of speech and language development
Diagnostics – evaluate and monitor communication skill development; identify and differentially diagnosis type and degree of communication disorder; identify individual strengths, needs, and learning patterns
Intervention/Rehabilitation – develop individualized treatment programs; provide individual and group training programs for family and professionals involved with the individual client to promote effective communication strategies; provide speech and language therapy on an individual or group basis
Collaboration – work closely with parents and caregivers, nursing staff, teachers, occupational and physical therapists, psychologists, early childhood educators and early intervention workers to provide effective programming
Support/Empower – provide individual counseling, parent/caregiver skills training and help establish support groups; assist clients and their families in obtaining the information, support, and skills they need to deal effectively with their individual situations.
The field of speech-language pathology has expanded to enable individuals to specialize in a variety of areas such as language learning disorders, voice disorders, non-verbal communication and aphasia. In addition, individuals may specialize in age groups ranging from paediatrics to geriatrics.
Professionals employed in the field of speech-language pathology keep up-to-date through continuing education opportunities such as workshops and conferences sponsored by provincial and national associations, ASHA, and allied health and education organizations.
The field of speech-language pathology is developing rapidly. To keep up to date professionals must be willing to learn continually. Every day at work is different; every client has different needs and different challenges.
Private speech-language services are available across the province. Licensed professionals who have met the standards for practice in Saskatchewan are available to provide services if:
*Note: Public services are available through schools, community health facilities, and hospitals
Private services are offered on a fee for service basis determined by the individual professional. For speech and language services there are hourly or daily fees along with charges for mileage, expenses, report or letter writing, travel time, consultation with others including attending meetings, and for lectures or in-service.
In this section: