What to Expect

Assessment and Therapy

If you'd like your child to be seen by a speech pathologist at our Clinic, the first step is to phone us or drop in to the Clinic.

Your first contact will probably be with our office staff, who will take down details about the age of your child and what you are concerned about. A speech pathologist will then contact you to discuss this in more detail and to arrange an appointment time for an assessment.

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Assessment

 

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How do I know if my child needs an assessment?

A discussion with a speech pathologist can help determine whether your child's skills are within the normal developmental range, or if an assessment is indicated.

What happens when my child comes to the Clinic?

If you'd like your child to be seen by a speech pathologist at our Clinic, the first step is to phone us or drop in to the Clinic. Your first contact will probably be with our office staff, who will take down details about the age of your child and what you are concerned about. A speech pathologist will then contact you to discuss this in more detail and to arrange an appointment time for an assessment.

Can I make appointments for outside school hours?

Our Speech Pathologists work weekdays from 8:30 am - 5:30 pm and we have limited availability on Saturdays from 8:30 am - 5:00 pm. The Centre is also open during school holidays. We do our best to give everyone their preferred appointment times. However, please remember that after-school times are very popular, and there may be a waiting list for your preferred time.

What happens during an assessment?

An assessment allows your speech pathologist to devise an individualised therapy plan to meet your child's needs. You will be asked to fill in a questionnaire before your appointment. You may also be asked to provide copies of relevant reports (for example, reports by your child's school counsellor, occupational therapist or paediatrician). The length of an initial assessment depends on the child and the presenting problem. A young child may be seen for only thirty minutes. Most assessments of school-aged children take between two and three hours. Your speech pathologist can let you know how long the assessment is likely to take. During the assessment, your speech pathologist will use a variety of tests to evaluate your child's speech, language and literacy skills. She will also talk with you about the questionnaire you filled out.

What happens after the assessment?

After the testing is complete, the speech pathologist will write a detailed report explaining how your child did on each test, what effect this could have on your child's communication skills and school learning, and what action is recommended. You should receive this initial assessment report within two weeks of testing. Your speech pathologist will then arrange a time to discuss the report with you. Our speech pathologists are also happy to talk to teachers and other specialists working with your child. Your speech pathologist may recommend that your child have a hearing test, or have further testing with a psychologist, paediatrician or occupational therapist.

Therapy

How long are therapy sessions?

If therapy is recommended, your speech pathologist will arrange a suitable time. Most children attending therapy at the Clinic attend once a week during school terms. Therapy sessions are usually for one hour, but young children may attend for thirty or forty-five minute sessions. Others attend several times a week, or attend therapy blocks during school holidays.

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What's involved in a therapy session?

Therapy is tailored to the needs of each child. The Speech Pathologist, in conjunction with the parent and sometimes the child, will determine the goals and priority for therapy. Our Speech Pathologists can assist children with a range of difficulties, including: articulation, language, literacy, fluency, social skills, Autism Spectrum Disorder, auditory processing and dyslexia. The Centre’s Speech Pathologists are trained in a range of programs that can effectively assist your child.

How do I get reports on my child's progress?

Your speech pathologist will monitor your child's progress and re-assess your child at regular intervals. She will give you feedback at the time of therapy sessons, and can provide written progress reports if necessary.

What are the Centre's opening hours?

The Centre is open six days a week, including school holidays. Monday to Friday: 8:30am to 5:30pm Saturday: 8:30am to 5:00pm 

Medical Rebates & Government Funding

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Can I claim a refund from Medicare for speech pathology services?

Some children and adults may be eligible for limited Medicare Plus benefits if they have an Enhanced Primary Care plan developed by their GP. The benefit is limited to five allied health services per year and cannot be used in conjunction with private health care benefits. Further information is available through the Department of Health and Ageing, Enhanced Primary Health Care Program website.

 

Can I claim a refund from my private health fund?

Private health funds cover speech pathology assessments and treatment. The amount of your refund, if any, will depend on your fund's rules and the level of your cover.

Am I able to use my Helping Children with Autism or Better Start funding?

Lindfield Speech Pathology and Learning Centre is a part of the Early Intervention Service Provider Panel for the Helping children with Autism and the Better Start for Children with a Disability funding. Children eligible for this funding are able to claim at our centre. More information can be found at the Australian Government Department of Social Services.

Can I use my National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) funding?

Lindfield Speech Pathology and Learning Centre is a registered provider of the NDIS. At this stage we are able to accommodate clients on a self managed plan or a plan managed plan only. More information on the NDIS website.

Do I need a referral from a doctor?

You do not need a doctor's referral to see a speech pathologist at the Centre. However, some private health funds may require a doctor's referral letter before they will pay benefits for speech pathology. Contact your private health fund for more information.