Peer-Reviewed Journal Details
Mandatory Fields
Lee, A., Fujiwara, Y., Liker, M., Yamamoto, I., Takei, Y., & Gibbon, F.
International Journal of Language & Communication Disorders
Electropalatography (EPG) activities in Japan and the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on EPG research and therapy: A report of presentations at the 7th EPG Symposium
WOS: 2 ()
Optional Fields
COVID-19 pandemic electropalatography EPG phonetics speech science speech therapy
Background At the 7th Electropalatography Symposium in Japan, held online on the 24 January 2021, a few speakers were invited to talk about how the COVID-19 pandemic had impacted their research and/or speech therapy that involved the use of electropalatography (EPG) as well as the procedures adopted in order to continue their work in a safe manner. The information on protective measures when using instrumental techniques in speech research and therapy may be useful for colleagues in research and the clinic. Aims The primary aims are: (1) to find out whether there are any published recommendations regarding protective measures for using EPG in research and clinic settings; (2) to discuss the impact of the pandemic and the corresponding restrictions and general protective measures directed (or advised) by local government and professional bodies at each stage of EPG work; and (3) to share experiences in using modified procedures for face-to-face EPG therapy sessions and combined EPG teletherapy. In addition, a brief overview of EPG and a summary of EPG research and clinical activities in Japan presented by one of the symposium organizers at the symposium are included. Methods & Procedures A review of the literature regarding protective measures recommended for using EPG for speech assessment and treatment or research, supplemented by a discussion of our own experiences. Main Contribution The literature review showed that there are no guidelines regarding protective measures for using EPG, but there is some advice regarding speech recording using microphones. Most published articles related to speech and language therapy (SLT) service during COVID-19 are about telepractice or general clinical guidelines for face-to-face speech therapy sessions. The protective measures for using EPG developed based on the general guidelines recommended by local government and professional bodies (e.g., using visors, transparent acrylic board) were described. Using EPG in telepractice was discussed as well. Conclusions It has been challenging to continue EPG research and therapy during the pandemic. In order to deal with this crisis, available knowledge regarding infection control and recommendations from local government and professional bodies were applied to design methods and procedures that allowed EPG research and therapy to continue. What this paper adds What is already known on the subject There are general protective measures recommended by local government and professional bodies regarding speech therapy sessions (e.g., using personal protective equipment (PPE), social distancing), but little is known about the measures for using instrumental techniques in speech research and therapy, particularly EPG. The equipment of each instrumental technique is different, so measures that are appropriate for one may not be suitable for others. Hence, specific recommendations are needed for EPG. What this paper adds to existing knowledge This paper provides pointers to information about recommendations regarding protective measures for speech research and therapy, supplemented with suggestions specific to EPG provided by experienced users based on actual experience. What are the potential or actual clinical implications of this work? In evaluating the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on EPG research and therapy, an analytical approach was taken to break down the steps involved in carrying out those activities, and the challenges we faced and the possible alternatives for completing the tasks were discussed.A similar approach can be applied to evaluate other aspects of speech therapy service.
Grant Details