Tag Archive: advocacy

5 Ways to Support Self-Advocacy in AAC Learners

July 30, 2018 by - Leave your thoughts

5 Ways to Support Self-Advocacy in AAC Learners

self-ad·vo·ca·cy: self ˈadvəkəsē/ Noun: the action of representing oneself or one’s views or interests. —————————- Empowering AAC learners to advocate for themselves may be one of the most important and impactful things that we can do to help them stay safe and achieve their goals. Here are some ways we can support that process. Provide messages for self-advocacy behaviors: It’s hard to represent your own interests without the appropriate set of vocabulary and messages. Words and prestored messages for protesting and rejecting are essential (e.g., No; Stop; No, thank you; I don’t want to). In addition, consider adding messages which allow the communicator to express disagreement or negative opinions (e.g., I don’t like it; I don’t think so; That doesn’t work for me; This is unfair; That’s disrespectful) and proactively provide self-advocacy information (e.g., Please do what I asked; It’s on my IEP; I have a right to be heard; I... [Read More...]

Filed under: ,

Tagged With: , ,

Ushering in a New Year of AAC

January 2, 2018 by - Leave your thoughts

Ushering in a New Year of AAC

The new year brings hope and promise, something that the AAC community can always use a little more of. Here are some thoughts on strengthening our sustainability as AAC service providers as we embark on the upcoming year.  View our role in AAC as a marathon, not a sprint. Supporting AAC learners can be an overwhelming experience and requires staying power. Pace yourselves, AAC friends. We have to be in it for the long haul, and that means we can’t use up all of our energy in the first leg of the journey. It’s okay to go home even though there’s more left to do. Remember the flight attendant’s advice: Put on your own oxygen mask before helping others. Keep learning. No matter how much you know about AAC, there is always more to learn. Whether it is reading journal articles to keep up with the latest research, viewing videos... [Read More...]

Filed under: ,

Tagged With: , ,

Site of the Month: AAC Funding Help

June 8, 2017 by - Leave your thoughts

Site of the Month: AAC Funding Help

Here in the US, there are many paths to getting access to AAC devices and services. Depending on the age of the communicator and other factors, we may pursue AAC funding the through the schools, public or private insurance, government programs for veterans and people with disabilities, and other sources. It is a complex task that requires specialized knowledge and some fortitude. June’s Site of the Month, AAC Funding Help, has been a resource to professionals and families for over a decade. Established by Lew Golinker at the Assistive Technology Law Center, the site has a wealth of resources to explore. Here are some highlights from that site. Overview of US funding options for AAC  Specific details about the requirements and procedures for major avenues to AAC funding  Sample letters of medical necessity and information on coding AAC devices and services for reimbursement purposes  AAC Report Writing Coach  Database of... [Read More...]

Filed under: ,

Tagged With: , , ,

Video of the Week: AACtual Advocacy

May 10, 2017 by - 1 Comment

Video of the Week: AACtual Advocacy

Better Hearing and Speech Month (#BHSM) is all about reaching out and advocating for access to communication supports. As professionals, advocacy is part of our core roles, though we generally struggle with finding the time to do as much as we’d like to. Few of us, however, have the opportunity to speak about behalf of AAC on the floor of the United States Senate. In today’s post, we share the recording of Rick Creech, lifelong user of AAC, speaking to the Special Committee on Aging. In the first part, we hear Rick’s prepared remarks to the Senate. Rick takes questions from the committee in the second video. Aging Without Community: The Consequences of Isolation and Loneliness Rick Answers Senators’ Questions

Filed under:

Tagged With: , ,

Video of the Week: Supporting People with Significant Communication Challenges in Medical Encounters

December 7, 2016 by - Leave your thoughts

Video of the Week: Supporting People with Significant Communication Challenges in Medical Encounters

Encounters with healthcare providers can range from the mundane (e.g., getting a prescription filled) and routine (e.g., doctor’s appointment) to situations which are more complicated and urgent (e.g., Emergency Room visit, hospital stay). People who use AAC are part of a larger group of individuals whose communication challenges make these situations more complex. In today’s featured video, Dr. David Beukelman discusses ways in which effective communication between patients with communication challenges and their healthcare providers can be supported.   This video was part of the USSAAC webinar series, which is made possible through the support of ISAAC. Many thanks to those organizations and the Patient Provider Communication organization whose free resources and information are shared in the presentation. Please consider joining and supporting these organizations so that they can continue to serve the AAC community with information, advocacy, and resources like these. Direct Link to Video – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uxd-hWODfm8

Filed under:

Tagged With: , ,

Taking AACtion

December 4, 2014 by - 1 Comment

Taking AACtion

Communication is a birthright. No agency or person should be permitted to restrict someone’s access to expression or dictate how communication should occur. Computerized functions for creating messages, emails, and texts are literally lifesaving for people like Mike. Please lend your support by telling CMS how important these things are before Saturday, December 6. You can learn more about the issues from our previous post and visit the public comment section to add your voice here. Thanks to Michael Phillips and the Florida Alliance for Assistive Services and Technology for this helpful video.  

Filed under:

Tagged With: , , , ,

Call for Action: Public Comments on AAC Device Funding

December 2, 2014 by - Leave your thoughts

Call for Action: Public Comments on AAC Device Funding

Chances are that most of our US-based SLPs have heard about the funding challenges with Medicare. We now have only a few more days to make our voices heard to support clients with AAC needs. If you haven’t already submitted public comment, please take the time to help in these advocacy efforts. Medicare (CMS) currently is reconsidering its National Coverage Decision (NCD) for Speech Generating Devices (SGDs).  As part of that process, CMS will allow interested members of the public to submit comments about future Medicare SGD coverage until December 6, 2014.  The information that follows was prepared by the Medicare Implementation Team, an ad hoc group of AAC clinicians, researchers, advocates, educators, manufacturers, etc., many of whom worked on the 2001 NCD. FOLLOW THESE 5 SIMPLE STEPS TO SUBMIT A COMMENT TO CMS. 1. Review the 8 PROPOSED COMMENT AREAS below that are critical to include in a revised NCD for... [Read More...]

Filed under:

Tagged With: , , , ,

Watch It Wednesday: Freed by Technology, Thwarted by Policy

November 12, 2014 by - Leave your thoughts

Watch It Wednesday: Freed by Technology, Thwarted by Policy

Tony and his team talk about the ways in which AAC makes living a full life possible, and the disastrous consequences of the Medicare policy implementation that restricts SGD features, among other things. The policy is on hold for now, and we have an opportunity for public comment. Take a look. Then take action. You can add your voice to the advocacy effort here. Public comments are open until December 6th.  

Filed under:

Tagged With: , ,