Development of an online platform that will provide additional tools to Speech Therapy.
In Speech Therapy (ST), sessions are conducted with various types of materials (games, pictures, words, sentences, texts, etc.) which should be available and accessible.
How it was born?
The idea for this project came up during the conception of physical materials for the language rehabilitation (namely reading), which is a daily task and a necessary one for the preparation of therapy sessions. In order to accomplish each language rehabilitation goal, it is necessary to create several worksheets with exercises, picture cards, words, sentences and texts. This materialization process is a very arduous one, since it includes the planning of exercises depending on the patient’s ability, the research, and the printing, cutting, gluing and lamination of the cards.
Concurrent with the design of the intervention material is the issue of its transportation and centralization of the register of results, since sessions can occur in different places (hospitals, clinics, home, etc.). In this way, we want to turn this process into a simpler one, as well as easier to access to, supporting the Speech Therapist’s task. This platform will have a database with a diverse number of pictures grouped into semantic categories, as well as sentences and texts.
How do you access a wide variety of materials without the need to physically have them? How do you register the results and how do you make their transportation more practical?
The idea would be to reduce the amount of material to carry and also to have access to them through an online platform.
Thus, the Speech Therapist will be able to manage therapy sessions and their patients, sharing doubts with other Speech Therapists and finding complementary tools for the analysis of the evolution of the patients. Moreover, patients will be able to use this platform to perform the exercises proposed by the Speech Therapist in the therapy session or at home.
In order to complement the Speech Therapist’s assessment, and based on the record of the exercises, the Speech Therapist will have access to the results with graphs showing the progress of their patients and the data and exercises will be able to be exported for xls and pdf formats.
Tools that we are developing which will be available:
1st Word and Picture (and vice versa);
2nd Sentence and Picture (and vice versa) and
3rd Text and Picture.
Thus we believe that LESS physical material can lead to MORE diversity of material and to the economy of physical space and money.
WITH REALING, LESS CAN BE MORE...
Target Audience (Portugal)
Speech therapy is an expanding career because as healthcare evolves, the demand among these health professionals also increases. Therapists follow the patient throughout life, in all ages, from birth to old age. In Portugal, according to data found at Portal of Central Administration of the Health System, there are over 2000 accredited Speech Therapists and according to data from the Annual Report of the Portuguese Association of Speech Therapists, there are over 800 Speech Therapists registered.
The tools developed in this project are intended to Speech Therapists and ST students, since only they are believed to be recognized, to have skills and expertise in the Speech Therapy area.
- Patient’s management;
- Management of therapy sessions;
- Support and sharing of questions between ST's;
- Search objects;
- Access to complementary tools for language rehabilitation;
- Replay of exercises;
- Homework assignments;
- Notification and monitoring homework assignments;
- View results of exercises;
- Export of exercises to pdf format and
- Export data and results for the pdf and xls formats.
Architecture and Technologies
Note that by using these technologies it is possible to centralize all the services that this platform offers, and it is not necessary to install and update it on the computer or the user’s device. The user can have access to it at anytime and from any device, such as iOS (iPhone and iPad), Android (Tablet and Smartphone), Windows (Windows Phone, Tablet, Notebook and Pc), OS X (Mac Notebook), Linux (Notebook and Pc), etc.
Not least importantly: Where is the platform housed?
Currently the platform is housed in a national server (www.ptisp.pt).
During and in the end of the development of each platform functionality, there is the concern of performing tests for validation.
The user support will be available on the platform. This way, the user will be able to submit questions or other clarifications regarding the use of the platform. Moreover, virtual guides or guided tours will help users to work with the platform.
We believe that the launch of the platform will be in October 2014 but there may be some surprises...
In the future we want to develop more tools for language rehabilitation, enabling sessions through the transmission of video and/or audio over the Internet, so that the Speech Therapist can meet and/or monitor direct exercises that the user will perform at home, and provide this service in other countries, especially Portuguese, Spanish, French and English speaking ones.
If we reach the objective or exceed, 15% are donated to "Associação Nacional de Afásicos".
The "Associação Nacional de Afásicos" (ANA) was founded on 26 October 1989, as a private institution of social solidarity and recognized as a legal person of public utility - D.R. nº 33 da III série de 8/2/90 (Portugal).
Divulge Aphasia, improve the quality of life of aphasic people, increase social participation, providing information, advice and promote therapeutic and training activities are some of the objectives of this institution.
The Realing’s Team