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Optimizing Device Success for People with Aphasia

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Optimizing Device Success for People with Aphasia

The AAC Clinic has seen over 200 clients with aphasia since 2010. Over the years we have noted that these individuals can be grouped by how they manage different AAC layouts in order to navigate to target content. This includes how the target content should be organized, how the client will navigate within the program and how they best learn to use these systems to communicate.

The first half of this presentation will discuss: (1) how the different layouts require specific skills or compensate for certain residual impairments (2) how we use functional assessments to determine the best potential layout(s) for our clients with aphasia and (3) the AAC user’s transition from a low technology communication book to a high technology device.

The second half of the presentation will focus on how to help people with aphasia learn this new and challenging method to communicate. The implementation of a communication device through one to one training within the clinic, providing home-based exercises, using communication partners as a trainer/educator and using peer mentoring within group settings will be discussed. Feedback from clients will be shared in terms of what method (s) they found most helpful for learning their systems.

We will conclude our presentation with an open forum discussion on success stories and strategies that may improve outcomes for this challenging but important population.

Author(s):

Loralee Maclean    
UHN Toronto Rehab
Canada

Jenna Jutzi    
UHN Toronto Rehab
Canada

Saima Sheikh    
UHN Toronto Rehab
Canada

 

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