"Hi, I’m Stephanie Perkov, a speech pathologist at MSWA, and I am ready to help people find their voice again."
"I work with a diverse range of people with neurological conditions who have difficulty speaking, eating and drinking."
"Communication difficulties can impact people’s lives profoundly; stopping them from expressing themselves, excluding them from social interactions and being part of their communities."
"Through technology and various techniques, I help our Customers say important phrases, use an iPad or eye gaze device so they can get their message across."
"I strongly believe being able to communicate is a basic human right, so it feels wonderful that I’m able to enrich lives in this way.”
Speech pathology enriches lives
Stephanie Perkov, a speech pathologist at MSWA, wants people to understand how speech pathology significantly improves the lives of those with neurological conditions.
“I work with a diverse range of people with neurological conditions who have difficulty with communication, eating and drinking,” Stephanie said.
“I get so much joy from my work and am always inspired by our Customers who work so hard to improve the quality of their lives.”
“They stay motivated and positive when it’s not always easy to do so, which I think, is just amazing.”
Stephanie works with six other speech pathologists as part of the MSWA Speech Pathology team. They work with people to improve all aspects of communication; speech, language and voice, both in people’s homes and in MSWA Service Centres across the State.
Depending on the person and their condition Stephanie will investigate and assess the most appropriate way in which they can communicate their messages, to those important to them. This can be through various means, technology for example can be used to assist communication, when other forms of communication are difficult. When traditional ways of accessing these devices breaks down, they can look at other methods such as eye gaze technology.
Speech pathologists also work to ensure appropriate mealtime equipment and environments are in place and recommend safe swallowing strategies.
So, what would happen in a world without speech pathology?
“As a disease progresses customers can experience difficulties with eating and drinking, we can provide strategies and modifications by altering their diets and fluids for their continued safety to ensure that they don’t experience adverse health difficulties,” Stephanie said.
“Communication difficulties can impact people’s lives profoundly; stopping them from expressing themselves, excluding them from social interactions and being part of their communities.”
“I strongly believe being able to communicate is a basic human right, so it feels wonderful that I’m able to enrich lives in this way.”
Stephanie has worked at MSWA’s various Service Centres for three years.
“MSWA provides such a wonderful and supportive environment,” Stephanie said.
“Every condition is different; every person is different, and everyone presents with different symptoms.”
“We tailor our services to ensure the needs of our individual Customers are met and they receive the best support they possibly can.”