The Doctor is Not In-Ensuring Collaboration Between Advanced Practice Providers and SLPs
With the advent of the Accountable Care Era, more individuals who were previously uninsured now have access to healthcare coverage. The increase in patients who need a medical home, paired with the growing shortage of primary care physicians in the United States (“Health Resources,” 2013; Herrick, 2010; Wong, 2012), have resulted in an increased demand for advanced practice providers (APP), including both physician assistants and nurse practitioners (Gamble, 2013b).
To address the critical need for early identification of developmental disorders, the American Academy of Pediatrics (2006) recommends that primary care providers complete developmental surveillance and screening on children, birth to 3 years of age. Advanced practice providers are in a key position to assess speech, language, and cognitive development of these young children (Scheffler et al., 2007), and the collaborative support of SLPs is essential to ensure appropriate and timely referrals from all providers. Understanding the dynamics of the relationship between the providers and the SLP will be essential to facilitate opportunities for interprofessional education and collaboration to maximize patient outcomes (McNeilly, 2013).
With the current and expected shortage of primary care physicians, advanced practice providers are routinely expected to assess speech/language development in children, Kids Health First and University of Georgia, Department of Communication Disorders joined together to study the expanded role of advanced practice providers and the ways that Speech-Language Pathologists can collaborate with advanced practice providers to ensure appropriate and timely referrals and follow-up
This poster presentation was presented at the American Speech-Language and Hearing Association’s annual convention in November, 2015 in Denver, CO. Read more to learn about this study and the results obtained.