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Rett UK NCP – Addressing the complex communication needs of individuals with Rett syndrome via telehealth

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We are delighted to welcome Dr Jennifer McComas as our guest presenter for this webinar. Dr McComas is Professor of Educational Psychology at the University of Minnesota in the USA. In September she will be visiting the Netherlands and UK, as well as several other European countries.

The complex communication needs of individuals with Rett syndrome and other neurodevelopmental disorders require dynamic assessment and individualized identification of appropriate augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) systems. Given the intense needs and rare nature of this disorder, as well as the lack of geographically widespread expertise, a service-delivery mechanism is needed to provide essential services to this population. Telehealth is a promising alternative for individuals who are unable, for one reason or another, to travel to centre-based expert services to receive healthcare and related services. Dr. McComas will describe the telehealth-based process she and her team have used to teach AAC-use with more than 15 participants with Rett syndrome. In addition, she will present illustrative case examples of various formal communication modes (e.g., microswitches operated with hands, eye pointing at picture cards, and eye-gaze activated speech-generating computer systems) addressed via telehealth. Challenges, limitations, and future directions will be discussed.

Presenters: Dr Jennifer McComas with Dr Gill Townend & Gerna Scholte. Time: 66 minutes
Date of original webinar: 5 September 2019

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