Our adult Speech and Language Therapy service was suspended in March 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
We have now reopened this service, although it is currently limited to urgent dysphagia telephone assessments, with face-to-face appointments only being offered in very urgent cases. We hope to re-open our communication service soon, with the highest priority patients being contacted first.
Our voice service remains closed. However, our acute stroke unit and ESD services are now running as normal.
If you have any concerns please contact us on the number below. Thank you for your understanding at this time.
We have a dedicated team of speech and language therapists (SLTs) treating patients with communication and swallowing difficulties.
The team consists of therapists working on the acute wards at the James Paget University Hospital, in the Early Supported Discharge team for stroke care, and in the community visiting locations such as community hospitals and clinics, as well as in patients’ homes.
Communication difficulties can include difficulty speaking, understanding, reading and writing, in addition to voice difficulties or stammering. Speech and language therapists assess for any difficulties and provide advice for maximising communication skills, in addition to providing a therapy plan if appropriate.
Swallowing difficulties are also assessed by speech and language therapists. We will offer support and guidance on ways to make eating and drinking as safe and comfortable as possible.
Communication and swallowing difficulties can be caused by a range of conditions such as brain injury (e.g. stroke or an accident), progressive neurological conditions (e.g. Parkinson’s, dementia, Multiple Sclerosis) or from a range of other illnesses or conditions.
Speech and language therapists work in conjunction with other healthcare professionals and carers to give advice and support to maximise a person's quality of life.
Our clinic locations are:
Kirkley Mill Health Centre, Clifton Road, Kirkley, Lowestoft, NR33 0HH
Shrublands Health Centre, Madgalen Way, Gorleston, NR31 7BP
As a result of the COVID pandemic, there is currently an increased waiting time for our service. As we return to a normal service, we will ensure that we see individuals with the highest clinical need as a priority. We will contact you as soon as we are able to let you know when an appointment is available.
If you have swallowing difficulties, you can be referred to our service by your GP or specialist nurse.
Communication referrals can be made by your GP, health professional or you can self-refer by calling East Coast Community Access (ECCA) on 01493 809977
Referrals for our voice clinics come via the Ear Nose and Throat department (ENT).
Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists
The Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists provides some useful information regarding voice therapy and online resources:
Their Voice Care Fact sheet can be found here: https://www.rcslt.org/wp-content/uploads/media/docs/policy/factsheet-top-tips-caring-for-your-voice.pdf
You are able to self-refer to our team if you have a stammer by calling 01493 808977.
There are some online resources which provide useful support for both individuals who stammer and their families:
British Stammering Association