Compare Speech Therapy  

Hi, 
My name is Lisa DiAngelo and I'm a licensed Speech-Language Pathologists (CCC-SLP) with 18 years of experience. 

People always ask me"which speech therapy provider i should go with?" so i decided to do a thorough research and share it so anyone can benefit and find the right provider for them. 

My research is based on publicly available information, user reviews and my personal experience working in clinics, schools and online. I encourage any to do their own research before selecting a provider.  

 

Speech Clinic

There are 9,300 Speech Therapy clinics in the U.S. so I'm not going to compare them to each other but they are very similar in the services they provide. 

They are mostly "Private-Pay" which means that you pay out of your pocket for a session which ranges from $150-$225 per session, which makes In-clinic therapy more expensive then other alternatives. 

Some clinics are credentialed with local insurer carriers which allows them to charge you the co-pay (~$25-$35 per visit) and the rest is charged to the insurer carrier.  Please make sure you check with your insurance carrier if they cover speech therapy before, so you don't get stuck with unexpected bills. 

The local speech clinic should be able to conduct an evaluation (usually $250-$400) of your child's or yours' speech impediment and create a plan of care to address that impediment over a period of time. 

The benefits of a clinic: 

  1. It's local

  2. You can meet the therapist in person

  3. For children that can't sit still, they can run around

The Disadvantages of a clinic: 

  1. Expensive ($150-$225/session)

  2. Requires commute to a physical clinic 

  3. They might not have the specialty you need

  4. Operate usually during limited business hours weekdays,  9am-5PM (which might be less convenient)

  5. Might take 3+ weeks to get on their calendar to start therapy



Summary: 
In-Clinic therapy used to be the go-to place for speech therapy until recently but with the increasing convenience and price affordability of Online Therapy, it is becoming less popular. If you are tech illiterate. 

To find a speech clinic next to you just google it and try calling them to schedule an appointment.  

 

Online Speech Therapy

During the COVID pandemic everyone got used to having Zoom video calls with their doctor and even school teachers thus Online Speech Therapy popularity started to soar.

Research* shows that online therapy is equal in quality to In-Clinic therapy. Because online seems to more affordable ($59-$89 per session as they don't have to overhead of rent) it becomes the go-to choice by most people. 

Online therapy is less ideal for seniors who are less comfortable with a computer or kids who can't sit still in-front of a screen for more then 5 minute (although some providers use digital games that kids love) 

 

The benefits of Online Therapy: 

  1. Affordable (50% lower cost)

  2. Easy to start (some providers match you immediately with a therapist)

  3. Convenient as you can do it from home (or any where 

  4. Available - some providers do evening and weekend sessions 

  5. Access to specialized therapists

  6. Can be more fun to kids as some providers use digital games that kids enjoy 
     

The disadvantages of Online Therapy: 

  1. Not for everyone - If a child can't sit still in front of a screen or if the patient can not operate a zoom


Summary: 

Online Therapy is becoming more and more popular as it's cheaper and more convenient for families. Some providers are also introducing speech practice games which makes therapy more fun and even more effective for children.

To make it easy to select an online speech therapy provider you can checkout this comparison: 

School Speech Therapy

All speech services provided by the school are available solely for the purpose of helping students “access” the educational curriculum and function appropriately at school.

There is a federal law named The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) that requires schools who get funding from the state to provide speech therapy to students who needs it.  Not all children who needs speech therapy actually get it as the school needs to 1) demonstrate that the child has a disability, 2) document how the disability is negatively impacting the child’s performance at school, and 3) demonstrate that the child requires "specially designed instruction" to address these needs and help them access the school curriculum.

Because there is a national shortage of speech therapists and many therapists prefer to avoid school settings as pay is lower, many schools can't provide the speech therapy their student needs. Therefore, most children get therapy once a week for 30 minutes in a groups of 6-8 children (which means they really get 5 minutes of individual speech therapy). So while school speech therapy is free, many parents supplements it with more effective speech therapy (online or in-clinic) to see actual results. 

 

The benefits of a School Speech Therapy: 

  1.  It's free


The Disadvantages of School Speech Therapy: 

  1. Done usually in groups and therefore, not very effective

  2. Takes 5-8 times longer to see results 

  3. Your child might not get the specialist they need as school therapists are generalists

  4. The quality of therapy might not be in par with what other options provide 


​Summary: 

School speech therapy is great used to be the go-to place for speech therapy until recently but with the increasing convenience and price affordability of Online Therapy, it is becoming less popular. If you are tech illiterate   

Following this evaluation, therapy services can be recommended if the results indicate a disorder or delay that is below age-level expectations and is impacting their daily life. However, qualifying for school services is a bit more complicated.

 
 
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ABOUT ME

Hi,

My name is Lisa DiAngelo and I'm a licensed Speech-Language Pathologists (CCC-SLP) with 18 years of experience. 

I have graduated with a Master's Degree in Speech-Language Pathology from the University of Florida in 1991.

My areas of expertise include treating children and adults with voice disorders, swallowing disorders, head and neck cancer, stroke rehabilitation, Parkinson's Disease and cognitive rehabilitation.
 

People always ask me"which speech therapy provider i should go with?" so i decided to share my research so anyone can benefit and find the right provider for them. 

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CONTACT

Let me know if i can help.

500 Terry Francois St. San Francisco, CA 94158

Lisa.D.Compare.ST@gmail.com

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