The Center for Communication Disorders (CCD), located on the Rocky Mountain University (RMU) campus in Provo, Utah, is a free clinic that provides exceptional speech-language pathology services to members of the community, particularly the underserved and uninsured. One of the specialties of the clinic is assisting individuals with acquired communication issues like aphasia.
What is Aphasia?
The Mayo Clinic describes aphasia as a disorder that affects communication including speech and understanding of both spoken and written language. It usually occurs suddenly after a stroke or a head injury but can also be developed gradually.
Providing Aphasia Support Services
The CCD allows graduate students in speech-language pathology programs to provide therapy for individuals with aphasia in a fun, supportive environment. Therapy can consist of working to increase language comprehension skills, using word-finding strategies, and initiating conversational turns.
The clinic also hosts a weekly group of patients during each semester that focuses on improving social communication for people with aphasia. The aphasia group provides an opportunity for individuals with aphasia to support each other socially.
“[The group] focuses more on the generalization of communication skills than what typically occurs in 1-on-1 therapy sessions,” said CCD Clinical Supervisor, Tim Stockdale, SLPD, CCC-SLP.
At the end of the semester, the group likes to go out for a meal to practice their skills. Recently, the group met for breakfast at the Black Bear Diner.
“We try to take clients on a restaurant outing at the end of each semester,” said Stockdale. It provides aphasia group members with a memorable experience and facilitates their ability to communicate in a practical, real-life setting.”
In addition to treating aphasia, the CCD provides additional speech-language pathology services including voice, feeding & swallowing, hearing, language, augmentative & alternative communication, social communication, speech, fluency disorders, and cognitive communication. Supported by the RMUFoundation, the CCD clinic staff is comprised of licensed clinicians and students from the Master of Medical Speech-Language Pathology (MS MedSLP) program at Rocky Mountain University.
For more information on the Center for Communication Disorders, visit the clinic’s website.