The Experiences and Preferences of Speech and Language Therapists Regarding Aphasia Therapy Apps

Pauline Cuperus*, Dörte de Kok, Vânia de Aguiar, Lyndsey Nickels

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalMeeting AbstractAcademic

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    Abstract

    Using aphasia therapy apps could be a means of meeting clinical recommendations for aphasia therapy related to dose and frequency. We currently know little about speech and language therapists’ (SLTs) experiences and perceptions of using therapy apps. Making use of a survey, the current study therefore aimed to answer three main research questions:

    1.  What are SLTs’ current experiences with regards to aphasia therapy apps?

    2. What are SLTs’ perceptions of PWA’s smartphone/tablet use and the suitability of online, independent therapy for this target group?

    3.  What do SLTs perceive to be facilitators and barriers to the use of aphasia therapy apps?

    Our survey respondents consisted of 29 Australian (mean age=35.5 years, 28 female) and 35 Dutch (mean age=36.2 years, 32 female) SLTs.

    Surveyed SLTs were very positive towards aphasia therapy apps. Encouragingly, they report frequent smartphone/tablet use even in their relatively elderly caseloads and were confident in their clients’ abilities to use aphasia therapy apps independently at home. We therefore conclude that there is plenty of support in the SLT community for increasing the use of aphasia therapy apps, and this could be a means of meeting clinical recommendations regarding intensity and dose of treatment.

    Nevertheless, our respondents also quite clearly indicated some barriers that they had experienced regarding the use of therapy apps. While it is not within researchers’ power to tackle all of these, the onus is on aphasia researchers and app developers to listen and respond to SLTs’ experiences and feedback and to improve the design of their digital therapies accordingly. The extensive feedback that we have received clearly underlines the importance of directly involving clinicians in the aphasia app development process.

    Original languageEnglish
    Article number6553
    Number of pages4
    JournalEasyChair preprints
    Publication statusPublished - 7-Sep-2021
    EventAcademy of Aphasia 59th Annual Meeting - Online
    Duration: 24-Oct-202126-Oct-2021
    Conference number: 59
    http://www2.academyofaphasia.org/2021-meeting-announcement/

    Keywords

    • Aphasia therapy apps
    • Clinician feedback
    • Digital aphasia therapy
    • therapy

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