The Efficacy of Telehealth-Delivered Speech and Language Intervention for Primary School-Age Children: A Systematic Review.
The purpose of this article is to determine if telehealth-delivered speech-language pathology interventions are as effective as traditional in-person delivery for primary school-age children with speech and/or language difficulties. A systematic review was conducted (in accordance with PRISMA guidelines) using five databases, two journals and reference lists. Titles and abstracts were screened for inclusion, with relevant studies reviewed in full-text. Initial searches identified 132 articles. Following exclusion of non-relevant studies, seven articles remained for inclusion. Results revealed both telehealth and in-person participants made significant and similar improvements when treatment effects were measured through five of the six outcome measures. Findings showed there is limited but promising evidence to support telehealth for delivering speech-language pathology intervention services to school-age children. Whilst this is encouraging, particularly for rural children where in-person services are limited, more rigorous study designs are required to support the efficacy of telehealth for this population.
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