Speech Therapy Telepractice for Vocal Cord Dysfunction (VCD): MaineCare (Medicaid) Cost Savings


  • Michael P. Towey Waldo County General Hospital Voice & Swallowing Center of Maine




This Brief Communication represents an analysis of the cost savings to MaineCare (also referred to as Medicaid) directly attributable to service provided via speech therapy telepractice. Seven female (primarily adolescent) MaineCare patients consecutively referred to Waldo County General Hospital (WCGH) with suspected diagnosis of Vocal Cord Dysfunction (VCD) were treated by speech therapy telepractice. Outcome data demonstrated a first month cost savings of $2376.72. The analysis additionally projected thousands of dollars of potential savings each month in reduced medical costs for this patient group as a result of successful treatment via speech therapy telepractice.  The study suggests that without access to speech therapy telepractice for patients with VCD, the ongoing medical costs to MaineCare will be ongoing and significant.


Author Biography

Michael P. Towey, Waldo County General Hospital Voice & Swallowing Center of Maine

Michael Towey has received the Lindamood Award for Clinical Leadership Excellence in Language and Literacy and is a Fellow of the Americah Speech-Language-Hearing Association.


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Blager, F.B. (2008). Symptoms and treatment of Vocal Cord Dysfunction/Paradoxical Vocal Fold Motion. Paper presented at the American Speech-Language Hearing Association Annual Convention, Chicago, IL, USA. http://www.asha.org/Events/convention/handouts/2008/1371_Blager_Florence/

Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. (2012). Telemedicine. Retrieved from http://www.medicaid.gov/


National Jewish Health. (2012). Vocal Cord Dysfunction (VCD): Treatment. Retrieved from http://www.nationaljewish.org/healthinfo/conditions/vcd/treatment/

Ricker, E., & Towey, M. (2007). Outside the box: Voice facilitation and vocal performance techniques. A unique treatment approach for VCD. Paper presented at the 3rd Annual National Conference on Vocal Cord Dysfunction, National Jewish Medical and Research Center, Denver, CO, USA.

Waldo County General Hospital. (2012). Proven results using national benchmarks: National Outcomes Measurement System (NOMS). Retrieved from http://www.mainespeechtherapy.org/content/4062/Proven_Results/



How to Cite

Towey, M. P. (2012). Speech Therapy Telepractice for Vocal Cord Dysfunction (VCD): MaineCare (Medicaid) Cost Savings. International Journal of Telerehabilitation, 4(1), 37–40. https://doi.org/10.5195/ijt.2012.6095



Brief Communications