The Emergence of TeleTherapy During

Better Hearing and Speech Month 2020

As we near the end of Better Hearing and Speech Month, “Communication at Work,” it is important to reflect upon and celebrate the triumphs made by both the client and therapist during these unprecedented times. Conceived out of these extraordinary circumstances, innovative programs have been implemented in order to continuously serve the patient, client, and student to the fullest degree. The ingenious methods in which speech-language pathologists have reconstructed their work during the COVID-19 pandemic has only testified to their steadfast commitment to making effective communication a human right and accessible for all.

As therapy sessions and curriculum made their way to the virtual world, there were certain obstacles and restrictions that therapists, teachers, and patients had to overcome. Despite these anticipated challenges, TeleTherapy has prevailed beyond measure.

The RiteCare Language and Literacy Lab Coordinator at the University of Central Missouri, Kim Stewart, M.S., CCC-SLP, sheds light on the numerous benefits in which TeleTherapy has offered her, her graduate students, and patients during Better Hearing and Speech Month: “One of our clients uses an Augmentative and Alternative Communication Device (AAC Device). She’s three years old, and she made tremendous gains through our virtual six week, twelve session time frame. Everything was very functional, and it was because of our online monitor system that we implemented that we were able to effectively utilize TelePractice methods.” The patient’s mother also shared in Stewart’s enthusiasm by personally reaching out to the student who conducted her child’s TeleTherapy sessions. She expressed her gratitude for the functionality of TeleTherapy methods and was delighted to witness her daughter’s exceptional development.

These success stories would not have been possible without the generous donations bestowed upon the SLP programs at UCM. “We are so thankful that we were provided all of these free resources immediately by this SLP Telecom. There was no money being allocated into this during this spiraling situation, but everybody came to bat for all of us and helped us to be successful. It was a wonderful situation and has proven to deliver quite remarkable results.”

As Better Hearing and Speech Month wraps up, we are still graciously accepting donations that support these life-changing services to children in need of speech-language therapy. The LIGHT Foundation has agreed to match every donation at 100% up to $10,000. Donation processing through The LIGHT Foundation removes any administrative costs and allows 100% of the donor’s gift to go to the RiteCare Program and the children they serve. Your generous tax-deductible donation will be distributed to the Missouri RiteCare Program of your choice or towards the state-wide efforts and initiatives of the Scottish Rite RiteCare program to help children communicate.


Dedicated Missouri RiteCare Programs

There are several professional Scottish Rite RiteCare affiliated programs in Missouri that all provide free and accessible services to children in need of speech, language and learning therapy:

– Walker Scottish Rite Clinic at Maryville University (St. Louis)
– Robert G. Combs Childhood Language PreSchool at University of MO (Columbia)
– Scottish Rite RiteCare Early Language Literacy Lab at University of Central Missouri (Warrensburg)
– RiteCare Early Literacy Lab at Truman State University (Kirksville)
– United Cerebral Palsy of Northwest Missouri (St. Joseph)
– RiteCare Clinic in Kansas City affiliated with Children’s Mercy Hospital
– Scottish Rite RiteCare services in partnership with the Children’s Miracle Network (Joplin/Springfield)
– Hannibal Regional Hospital’s speech therapy assistance program (Hannibal)