Comprehensive clinical evaluation of oral-motor, feeding and swallowing skills. This will include completing a thorough review of medical and feeding history, using standardized assessment tools, and observation of feeding. (This includes observation of pre-feeding skills for babies and kids who may not yet be eating by mouth.) You may be asked to complete provided history forms and/or food journals before the evaluation session so that we can make the best use of our time together. Education will be provided related to preliminary observations as well as recommendations for further testing.
For medically fragile infants and toddlers who also have communication concerns, additional speech/language evaluation will be considered on a case-by-case basis so that communication goals can be included in our family centered care plan. Because we are a feeding focused practice we may not be able to accommodate families with only communication concerns.
Evaluations will take place in your home, with every effort made to incorporate your child’s routine meal or snack schedule. The home environment provides several advantages, including your child’s comfort/familiarity with the surroundings and the opportunity to observe what you already have available for seating/positioning and feeding equipment. We can also discuss mealtime family dynamics and any impact they may be having on feeding
*The South Carolina Speech Language Pathology and Audiology Board requires feeding evaluations to take place in person. While guidelines have been relaxed to allow for some assessments to take place via telepractice in light of COVID-19, this is not the case for evaluations involving feeding (view more info). If you are uncomfortable about an in-person visit at this time please contact us to discuss precautions or modifications that can be used to make the visit as safe as possible for everyone.
A written report will be provided for all evaluations.
If your child has had a recent evaluation of feeding and swallowing skills another evaluation may not be necessary. You must provide a copy of the previous evaluation for review to determine whether it contains all that is needed to create a care plan. The general timeframe for a “recent” evaluation is 6 months, though this might vary (for example, if your baby had an evaluation while in the NICU, we will need to complete a new evaluation now that he or she is home).
Re-evaluations will be completed as needed for continued treatment planning (typically after 6 months to 1 year or with a significant change in medical status).
After an evaluation has been completed your therapist will work with you to develop a unique plan for your child’s treatment. This plan will be based on your goals for your child within the family, areas of strength and weakness observed during the evaluation, and any concerns presented by your child’s other medical providers. The treatment plan will outline how often and for how long we will meet and the specific goals we will target in therapy.
Treatment will be provided either in your home or via telepractice using real-time video technology (or by a combination of the two). Working with your child in his own environment provides us with the greatest opportunity to carry over skills beyond therapy sessions.
YOU are the expert in your child, so you are the most important person on the treatment team. A parent or primary caregiver will be actively involved in all treatment sessions. There may be some hands-on strategies that your therapist will use first with your child, but the goal will always be to coach you to confidence and independence in using all of the techniques outside of therapy.
All sessions will include a review of what’s been going on since the last session and the plan for the current visit, hands on treatment from the therapist/parent team and review of the session with goal-setting for the week ahead.
Family Consultation / Coaching
One-on-one and group sessions are provided virtually via live videoconferencing.
Do you want help or education with a particular topic (preparing for the introduction of solid foods, choosing a cup or utensils for your baby/toddler, breastfeeding education are just a few examples)? There’s a lot of information out there, but maybe you want an expert to condense down what applies to you (and tell you what might be wrong or potentially risky).
Do you know what you need or want to do to improve mealtimes but you just can’t seem to to follow through or make it stick and you need someone to coach you through?
Has a test, like a swallow study been recommended for your child and you want to really understand what will happen and what are the potential risks and benefits?
Parent Classes / Support Groups
All services are provided on a private pay basis. Payment will be collected on the date of service and can be made using credit/debit card, HSA card or check. If you wish to pursue reimbursement through your insurance company we are happy to provide you with a superbill (an itemized receipt document that includes the diagnostic and procedural codes associated with the session). This is not a guarantee of reimbursement. Please consult with your insurance company about the possibility of reimbursement before services are provided. No refunds will be issued for services that are not reimbursed by insurance.
Therapy services are offered at a rate of $95/1-hour session. Evaluations are $250, which includes a written evaluation report.