WHEN Tony Tung was seriously injured during a hit-and-run accident in Redan last month, he never thought he would need the help of a speech pathologist.
But Mr Tung lost some of his cognitive functions, including talking, remembering and problem-solving, when his spine was injured in the July 19 fall off his motorised bicycle in Yarrowee Parade at Sebastopol.
He now has three or four weekly sessions with a Ballarat Health Services speech pathologist to help him regain the cognitive skills he had before the accident.
“They are helping me get my speech back,” Mr Tung said.
A BHS Queen Elizabeth Centre rehabilitation unit inpatient, Mr Tung hopes their aid will get him back to both his hospitality course and his sporting love, street soccer.
BHS speech pathologist Claire Stewart said the job involved a lot more than dealing with speech issues.
“It’s a bit of a misnomer. We work with both adult and paediatric clients on all aspects of communication: language, voice, fluency, articulating messages, motor speech difficulties, problems swallowing,” Ms Stewart said.
As part of Speech Pathologists Week, BHS speech pathologists are holding a dinner, having displays in the QEC foyer and conducting an allied health professionals quiz and a colouring competition for paediatric patients.
La Trobe University fourth year masters speech pathology student Ann Reinhardt said she was spending her nine-week placement split between inpatient rehabilitation and acute ward patients, such as stroke victims, head and neck cancers, progressive neurological diseases, paediatric illnesses and premature babies with drinking problems.
“Patients can range from children having language problems at school to grandparents who are progressing with dementia,” Ms Reinhardt said.