Theses and Dissertations

Date of Award

2019

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)

Department

Abraham S. Fischler College of Education

Advisor

David Graf

Committee Member

Mary Clisbee

Abstract

Telepractice (or telehealth, teletherapy, tele-rehabilitation) is becoming more common. Speech-language pathology entered the world of telemedicine later than other fields of medicine. With the increasing size of the aging population with the baby boomers, the need for speech-language pathology can be achieved through practitioners using telepractice. Despite the need, barriers such as reimbursement, licensing, privacy and confidentiality, technology and technology acceptance are hindering the adoption of telepractice. This study uses the Delphi methodology with qualitative data collection and analysis to come to a consensus on how to best regulate and operate telepractice with speech-language pathology so that it is more readily adopted.

The panel of 11 experts were identified and organized into three groups: 6 speech-language pathologists working with adult and geriatric patients, 2 regulatory experts, and 3 university speech-language pathology program faculty and administrators. The Delphi method was used in multiple rounds to collect data on the barriers to telepractice, as well as potential solutions.

Rounds included: individual semi-structured interviews (barriers, training and curriculum, technology acceptance and use, HIPAA compliance), statements from data collected in previous rounds, where participants made additional comments and voted, and final presentation of results to participants. During this final round results and solutions were presented, , as well as suggestions for technology training options to speech-language pathologists.

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