Speech Therapy - CHI Health, Omaha, Nebraska (NE)

CHI Health Rehabilitation Center at Immanuel provides complete diagnostic and therapeutic speech therapy services for inpatient and/or outpatient programs.  These services are designed to maximize each patient’s cognitive, communicative, and swallowing abilities as needed.  Impairments addressed may include the following:

  • Cognitive deficits
  • Language deficits
  • Speech deficits
  • Difficulty in swallowing
  • Voice Disorders

Individuals who are having difficulty their wants, needs, and ideas may be appropriate for an Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) device.   Speech-language pathologists will assess the appropriateness of a communication device and assist in its implementation to aid communication.   The speech-language pathology staff at Immanuel have completed all requirements to be considered a Center of Excellence for Dynavox communication devices. 

The speech-language pathology staff  are highly skilled in addressing swallowing difficulties (dysphagia). Therapists are competent in completing Modified Barium Swallow studies using videofluoroscopy to assess the swallowing mechanism.   Staff are certified to complete VitalStim Therapy including the use of the VitalStim Experia. The Experia allows the therapist to use biofeedback of the swallow, surface electromyography (sEmg), and surface electromyography with triggered stimulation in order to provide the patient with better outcomes.  Therapists are also certified to complete Deep Pharyngeal Neuromuscular Stimulation (DPNS) which uses stimulation to cranial nerves for  improved muscle strength and reflexes of the swallowing mechanism.

The following are definitions for common speech and language pathology terms. The American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) and National Institutes of Health (NIH) are useful websites to get more information speech and language voice, and swallowing disorders. We have included links to individual topics for your convenience.

Aphasia
- Loss of language function with expression, comprehension or a combination of both (ASHA | Aphasia.org | NIH)

Apraxia - Difficulty executing purposeful movements for production of speech; muscle tone and coordination are normal (ASHA | NIH )

Augmentative & Alternative Communication (AAC) - A form of communication that may be helpful when oral production of speech is difficult (ASHA)

Cognition - Includes all the mental processes for memory, problem solving, reasoning, sequencing, planning, organizing and attention; these skills are essential for tasks such as balancing a checkbook, paying bills, scheduling events and completing work requirements "

Dysarthria
- Speech difficulties resulting from muscular impairment which can effect not only articulation but respiration, phonation, resonance and prosody (ASHA)

Dysphagia - Difficulty swallowing (ASHA | NIH)

Dysfluency - Difficulty producing sounds, syllables, words & phrases smoothly; stuttering (ASHA | NIH)

Language - A structured, symbolic system for communication which includes expression and comprehension (ASHA)

Modified Barium Swallowing Study - Use of videofluoroscopy to assess swallowing safety and function (ASHA)

Neuromuscular Electrical Stimulation - Use of electrical stimulation for improved movement and function of muscles involved in swallowing (VitalStim)

Speech - Production of speech sounds correctly and fluently (ASHA)

Voice
- Sound produced by the vibration of the vocal folds (ASHA)