Speech Pathology provides specialist assessment and management of babies, children and adults with communication and swallowing problems.
Communication problems can include:
Difficulty reading and writing
Swallowing problems can include:
Coughing when eating and drinking
Food getting stuck in your throat
Speech Pathologists work with patients, carers and the clinical team to set realistic, timely and appropriate goals to maximise functional communication and swallowing outcomes.
Speech Pathology provides assessment and management for patients with swallowing and communication impairments across all acute units. Specialist services include:
Head & Neck
Acute Aged Care
We are committed to an effective holistic team approach to safe and timely discharge.
Sub-acute Speech Pathology services are provided in 1:1 and group settings to:
Geriatric Evaluation and Management (GEM)
Transition Care Program
Community Based Rehabilitation
Dysphagia Management Clinic
The Speech Pathology Department at Sunshine Hospital operates an outpatient Dysphagia Clinic for people with swallowing disorders (dysphagia). Clients are seen for clinical swallowing assessments and have access to instrumental assessments as indicated (including Videofluoroscopy and FEES (Fiberoptic-Endoscopic Evaluation of Swallowing).
All health professionals can refer to the Dysphagia Clinic. Referrals will only be accepted for clients who meet the clinic's referral criteria and live within the Western Health catchment area.
Referrers are encouraged to use the Dysphagia Clinic Referral Form.
Should referrers choose not to use the Referral Form, written referrals will be accepted. Written referrals must include the following mandatory information:
All referrals must be faxed to (03) 8345 6529 (Western Health Central Intake Office).
Appropriate referrals will be placed on a waiting list, with appointments prioritised according to clinical urgency.
For any enquiries, please contact the Speech Pathology Department on (03) 8345 1559 between 8:00am – 4:30pm on Monday to Friday (excluding public holidays).
Voice/Head and Neck
Speech Pathology provides outpatient services for patients referred from Western Health's Ear, Nose and Throat (ENT) Clinic. Speech Pathology also provides outpatient services for Head & Neck patients requiring ongoing outpatient management, who have completed their inpatient stay at Western Health.
Paediatric Speech Pathology is within the Children's Allied Health Service.
Speech Pathologists offer multi-disciplinary assessment and therapy to preschool children (0-5 years) with difficulties in more than one area of their development. The team also provide specialist services to children with feeding and/or swallowing difficulties as inpatients or outpatients.
Quality improvement activities, professional development, and the commitment to ongoing learning ensure that best practice models are utilised.
There is a strong focus on teamwork and leadership. Staff are empowered through the promotion of open communication and consultation, along with a sense of independence and responsibility in their own work.
Speech Pathology excels in quality initiatives for patient-centred care.
Global Mealtime Guide – pictorial reference for parent education of diet modifications in their cultural cuisine
Cultural Key Phrases – multimodal adjunct to swallowing assessment in 10 common languages within the Western Health catchment
Introducing ipad technology into patient care
Speech Pathology led outpatient Dysphagia Clinic