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Year : 2016  |  Volume : 30  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 1-6

Current status of availability of speech and language pathologist for individual with Parkinson disease: In a metropolitan city

1 Department of Speech and Language Pathology, AYJNIHH, Mumbai, Maharashtra, India
2 Department of Speech and Language Pathology, T. N. Medical College, Mumbai, Maharashtra, India

Correspondence Address:
Priya Kshitij Shah
501, Diwani Mahal, Gulmohur Road No: 1, JVPD Scheme, JUHU, Mumbai - 400 049, Maharashtra
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0974-2131.196243

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Introduction: Worldwide, prevalence of communication disorder in Parkinson Disease (PD) is 89%, however only 3-4% receives Speech Therapy. This highlights the need for an increase in the number of professionals to manage the various communication problems these individuals with PD face. This study was conducted using small sample survey on individuals with PD, medical professionals and Audiologists and Speech Language Pathologists (ASLP). Aim: Information about the need, availability and any other difficulties encountered for communication management were procured. Methodology: 56 individuals with PD, 30 medical professionals consisting of Neurologist and ENT and 158 ASLP were surveyed. To corroborate availability of speech language pathologists, intake capacity of Audiology and Speech Language Pathology students for graduation and post graduation in Mumbai and a rough estimate of their post education status in terms of area of practice was obtained. Results: Though more than 50% individuals with PD face communication difficulties only 5% are taking therapy. Over 50 % medical professionals stated difficulty in finding a speech therapist to refer the individual with PD. Only 10% of practicing speech therapists treat individuals with PD on a regular basis. On an average only around 27 post graduates pass out per year in Mumbai, roughly 50% of the same opt for a career in Speech language pathology. Conclusion: This fact highlights the need for increase in the man power development. This study on PD is a preliminary estimate of one of the many communication disorders that come under the treatment purview of a Speech and Language Pathologist.

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