Communication Disordered: Program Implementation in Long-Term Care The organizational structure of long-term care (LTC) facilities often removes the rehab department from the interdisciplinary work culture, inhibiting the speech-language pathologist's (SLP's) communication with the facility administration and limiting the SLP's influence when implementing clinical programs. The SLP then is unable to change policy or monitor the actions of ... Article
Article  |   October 26, 2016
Communication Disordered: Program Implementation in Long-Term Care
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • George Barnes
    Genesis Rehabilitation Services, Kennett Square, PA
    Kessler Institute for Rehabilitation, West Orange, NJ
    Select Specialty Hospital, Mechanicsburg, PA
    Long Island University, Brookville, NY
  • Disclosures
    Disclosures ×
    Financial: George Barnes is a speech-language pathologist with Genesis Rehabilitation Services, Kessler Institute for Rehabilitation, and Select Specialty Hospital and an adjunct professor at Long Island University. Joseph Salemi has no relevant financial interests to disclose.
    Financial: George Barnes is a speech-language pathologist with Genesis Rehabilitation Services, Kessler Institute for Rehabilitation, and Select Specialty Hospital and an adjunct professor at Long Island University. Joseph Salemi has no relevant financial interests to disclose.×
  • Nonfinancial: George Barnes and Joseph Salemi have no relevant nonfinancial interests to disclose.
    Nonfinancial: George Barnes and Joseph Salemi have no relevant nonfinancial interests to disclose.×
Article Information
Speech, Voice & Prosodic Disorders / Swallowing, Dysphagia & Feeding Disorders / Special Populations / Cultural & Linguistic Diversity / Older Adults & Aging / Healthcare Settings / Professional Issues & Training / Regulatory, Legislative & Advocacy / Part 2
Article   |   October 26, 2016
Communication Disordered: Program Implementation in Long-Term Care
Perspectives of the ASHA Special Interest Groups, October 2016, Vol. 1, 64-67. doi:10.1044/persp1.SIG15.64
History: Received September 3, 2015 , Revised March 23, 2016 , Accepted April 13, 2016
Perspectives of the ASHA Special Interest Groups, October 2016, Vol. 1, 64-67. doi:10.1044/persp1.SIG15.64
History: Received September 3, 2015; Revised March 23, 2016; Accepted April 13, 2016

The organizational structure of long-term care (LTC) facilities often removes the rehab department from the interdisciplinary work culture, inhibiting the speech-language pathologist's (SLP's) communication with the facility administration and limiting the SLP's influence when implementing clinical programs. The SLP then is unable to change policy or monitor the actions of the care staff. When the SLP asks staff members to follow protocols not yet accepted by facility policy, staff may be unable to respond due to confusing or conflicting protocol. The SLP needs to involve members of the facility administration in the policy-making process in order to create successful clinical programs. The SLP must overcome communication barriers by understanding the needs of the administration to explain how staff compliance with clinical goals improves quality of care, regulatory compliance, and patient-family satisfaction, and has the potential to enhance revenue for the facility. By taking this approach, the SLP has a greater opportunity to increase safety, independence, and quality of life for patients who otherwise may not receive access to the appropriate services.

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