Nepean Speech and Occupational Therapy are thrilled to be offering Telehealth as an alternate means of service delivery.
In these uncertain times it is important that all of our children’s and adolescent’s speech and occupational therapy services continue. NSPOT are now offering our services online!
What is Telehealth?
This is where allied health services are provided online. There is evidence supporting the use of online sessions for speech therapy and occupational therapy, indicating that these services are usually at least as effective as standard therapy.
Importance of Telehealth
Continuity of accessing regular therapy sessions is important in achieving goals. Prolonged absences may result in regression of skills learnt. At NSPOT we have a Therapy Pathway that we strongly support, and continuity of attendance to therapy is integral to this. Telehealth will enable us to provide on-going and consistent therapy for your child’s needs.
With the current uncertainty of when face-to-face services will resume to normal, we are strongly recommending that our clients access their therapy services through Telehealth.
Will the quality of therapy reduce as the therapists can’t access the resources that they use in the office from their homes?
No, this will not occur at all! NSPOT moved ahead with the times 12 months ago and transitioned to storing all of our information in the cloud. There is not a single resource that our team can’t access from home. This enables us to continue planning our sessions in the same manner as we did before. In addition to this, we have now been exposed to a plethora of new online therapy resources. It will take awhile a while to get through all of them, there are so many! The quality of these are so high that we plan on continuing to use some of these resources in our face to face sessions when we are able to return to our rooms.
Does Telehealth work?
Telehealth works quite successfully in most cases. It is widely used in remote areas in Australia where families are unable to access health professionals. This is the reason that speech therapy and occupational therapy clinics worldwide are now using Telehealth as a means of delivering therapy services.
Benefits of Telehealth:
- It can be used to deliver some types of assessment and most therapy sessions.
- NDIS have an expectation that therapy services be delivered as close as possible to the child’s natural environment. Delivering telehealth services complies with this.
- Telehealth provides the means to give parents online coaching and support. This is very effective in improving parents’ ways of administering activities and strategies in the home environment.
- It is great for home practice as the therapist can see what is in your home (you are free to take us for a walk through!) and provide strategies on how to use household items, toys and books to support therapy goals. They can also see how your child plays and behaves in their home environment and provide strategies to support them. This means that your home practice will become even more meaningful and effective!
- No need to drive to therapy sessions, find parking etc.
- Telehealth is fun too! We all know how much our kids love being on their tablets and computers! Can you imagine how excited they will be when they see their favourite therapist on there?
What platform will be used?
NSPOT will deliver Telehealth services via the Zoom app. This user-friendly app works on computers and smart devices, including smart phones. A ‘Zoom’ link will be emailed to you which you will click on at your appointment time. More detailed Instructions for how to set up and navigate Zoom will be sent on request. Please note, Zoom won’t work unless you download the app first, so please don’t forget to do this. The Zoom app works best if downloaded on Chrome.
What technology will you need?
- Computer with speakers and webcam, or
- Smart phone, or
- Smart tablet
- Access toWi-Fi
- Headphones (optional)
Payments for Telehealth.
Telehealth is supported by:
- Some Health Funds (please contact your fund to determine eligibility)
- Medicare (as of 30 March 2020)
What do I need for my Telehealth session?
You will need:
- Computer or smart tablet
- Speech /Occupational therapy homework book
- Your therapist may also send resources to your email prior to your session. They may also ask you to collect things from your house (e.g. fruit, clothing items, etc.). Other things that may be helpful to have on hand, but not necessary, may include:
- Paper, Scissors, Glue, Textas
Do I need to do anything to change the environment at home?
Try to find a quiet place free of distractions. We are flexible with our appointment times to be able to work in with your home routine.
Please contact us if you would like to ask questions or give Telehealth a go!