Few details are known about the experience of people with Parkinson’s disease (PD) and their carers in relation to their need for and access to speech and language therapy (SLT). This study investigated the perceptions of need in relation to maintaining communication and the nature and experience of SLT. Questionnaires were sent to 141 people with PD and 78 carers living in the community, of whom 123 and 68 respectively responded. Twenty-five people with PD (20%) had had contact with SLT, of whom 71% felt referral was at the right time and 80% felt SLT had helped. Eighty-three percent of all respondents with PD felt that referral should occur before changes posed a problem. Easier and increased access to SLT was needed, focusing on overall management of communication rather than specific impairments. This study contributes to the PD National Institute of Health and Clinical Excellence Guideline (2006) recommendation to articulate best practice in SLT.
|International Journal of Therapy and Rehabilitation
|Published - Jul 2006