Presentation Title: Obtaining Objective Clinical Measures in Tele-Evaluations of Dysarthria
Author Name(s): Brianna Kiefer, MS; Jordanna Sevitz, MS CCC-SLP, Jessica Huber, PhD; Michelle Troche, PhD
Abstract: The COVID-19 pandemic has required speech-language pathologists to utilize telehealth as a primary service delivery method despite there being minimal evidence on how to evaluate patients with motor speech disorders accurately and efficiently via telehealth. In the current study, we provide a tutorial on how to objectively evaluate patients with motor speech disorders via a common telehealth platform, Zoom. We conducted three tele-evaluations on people with motor speech disorders. From these evaluations, we establish and outline resources for clinicians including evaluation tools and procedures, objective and subjective analysis protocols, and normative values. We discuss three case studies which address diagnoses and potential treatment targets established from the tele-evaluations. Our research shows that tele-evaluations of motor speech disorders can be done efficiently and accurately in real-time to add more certainty to the subjective measures of speech production traditionally used in motor speech evaluations. This research is a viable resource for speech-language pathologists during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond, as telehealth is likely going to be an increasingly popular service delivery method even after the pandemic. Future studies should compare the results from motor speech evaluations conducted in-person to those conducted via telehealth.