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Engaging Persons with Aphasia in Community Resources

presented by Janet Patterson, PhD, CCC-SLP and Jacqueline Hinckley, PhD, CCC-SLP

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Disclosure Statement:

Financial: Dr. Patterson and Dr. Hinckley receive compensation from MedBridge for this course. Dr. Patterson is employed by VA Northern California Health Care System. Dr. Hinckley is employed by Nova Southeastern University.

Non-Financial: Dr. Patterson is a member of the executive board of the Academy of Communicative Disorders and Sciences. Dr. Hinckley is on the advisory board of the National Aphasia Association.

Satisfactory completion requirements: All disciplines must complete learning assessments to be awarded credit, no minimum score required unless otherwise specified within the course.

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Video Runtime: 62 Minutes; Learning Assessment Runtime: 16 Minutes

The value of participating in group activities to an individual's psychosocial and physical well-being is clear from research evidence. This is the case both for persons without and with aphasia. Gaps exist between the evidence base and implementing participation activities from the perspectives of community groups welcoming a person with aphasia (PWA), determining the interest or willingness of a PWA to participate in a group, and the strategies available to a PWA or caregiver to translate the desire into reality. This course will present the evidence describing the value of group membership to PWA and, through a series of case examples, will discuss the challenges faced by clinicians, PWA, and caregivers in accessing, joining, and sustaining membership in community groups.

Meet Your Instructors

Janet Patterson, PhD, CCC-SLP

Janet Patterson is chief of the the Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology Service at the VA in Northern California. Prior to that, she held academic positions as faculty member, associate dean, and department chair at California State University East Bay, Central Michigan University, and Michigan State University. With coeditor Patrick Coppens, PhD, CCC-SLP, she published Aphasia…

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Jacqueline Hinckley, PhD, CCC-SLP

Dr. Jacqueline Hinckley is currently Associate Professor in Speech-Language Pathology at Nova Southeastern University and Executive Director Emeritus at Voices of Hope for Aphasia. Dr. Hinckley is the author of two books, Narrative-Based Practice in Speech-Language Pathology and What Is It Like to Have a Communication Impairment? Simulations for Family, Friends, and Caregivers. She is…

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Chapters & Learning Objectives

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1. Evidence For the Value of Group Membership

Evidence exists to show the value of group membership; however, not everyone is aware of this evidence. Clinicians may recommend that PWA become involved in treatment or community groups but are unaware of the challenges that PWA and their caregivers face in finding and joining groups. Understanding how to identify these challenges and devise strategies to support PWA in becoming part of a group is crucial to PWA life participation.

2. Aphasia Advocacy and Awareness: PWA From the Perspective of the Community Group

LPAA groups and ICAPs are founded on principles of inclusion for PWA; however, other community groups may not be, and their regular members may not be familiar with aphasia or its consequences, especially for communication in group settings. A PWA’s entrance into a group can be facilitated if the clinician identifies aspects of the group such as its culture, membership requirements, and participation expectations, and conveys to the group the challenges a PWA may face when entering into the group.

3. Supporting PWA to Access Groups

To be successful as a group member, one must know the rules and customs of a group. From the PWA’s perspective, there are behaviors or communication needs that must be addressed in treatment to support successful group membership. Clinicians must be able to identify what a PWA needs in order to become part of a group and create a hierarchy of intervention activities preceding group membership.

4. PWA Group Membership From the Perspective of Family and Caregiver

Often a PWA may wish to be part of a group but may not be able to independently manage group membership requirements. There may be a mismatch about group membership between caregivers and family members. For example, a caregiver may want a PWA to join a group but the PWA does not wish to go out, or the family member may be concerned about a PWA independently traveling to a group when the PWA wants to go. Identifying and resolving mismatches will increase the likelihood of success for group membership.

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