My Top Five Continuing Education Courses in Dysphagia


We all have to do it.  Some of us love it more than others.  Continuing Education.  Since six years of school just wasn’t enough!

I have been through A LOT of continuing education courses.  I’m sure you’re thinking, yea, so have I.  I really honestly do take a lot of courses.  In fact, I’m working on my 12th ACE award.

I will definitely say that I’ve enjoyed some courses and thoroughly detested some courses.  I have walked out of courses, vowed to never listen to certain speakers again and also vowed to see people any opportunity I have.

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Course Alert-Evidence Based Practice

critical_thinking_skills

Image from:http://thecollaboratory.wdfiles.com/local–files/philosophy-of-thought-and-logic-2011-2012/critical_thinking_skills.jpg

Northern Speech Services has a new course called:  Evidence-Based Practice In Adult Dysphagia Management: What The Evidence Says About Commonly Selected Rehabilitation Interventions.  This is a webinar by Ianessa Humbert, Catriona Steele and Phoebe Macrae.

I took this course over the weekend.  It was GREAT!  It starts with approximately 35 minutes of review of the anatomy and physiology by Dr. Humbert.  The second section is close to 2 hours and discusses 4 compensations/exercises including:  chin tuck, Mendelsohn Maneuver, Shaker and the Effortful Swallow.  Evidence for each of the 4 techniques is discussed and a look at critically appraising techniques/exercises for dysphagia.  A case study is provided for each.

This course only looks at 4 exercises/compensations, however it also breaks down the critical assessment for each, allowing the viewer to apply the same principle to any exercise/compensation.

I would definitely recommend this course to anyone working with patients with dysphagia.

Dysphagia Awareness Month

I was beyond excited that June is Dysphagia Awareness Month.  I have been planning this post for weeks in my head and then life stepped in and said, “not today.”  That “not today” lasted over a week.

To begin the summer, I ended up getting really sick.  In fact, I was sick to the point the thought of food made me worse.  Needless to say, to write about swallowing and food was not my top priority at that time!!

How are you celebrating dysphagia?  To me, the best way to celebrate is to educate.

So many people have no idea what dysphagia is.  It is imperative that we educate the public.  You never know when that ONE person you talk to may need the information.  When I check into a hotel for a continuing education event and they ask me why I’m staying, you’d better believe I tell them what I’m there for and then tell them a little about dysphagia.  People ask all the time what I do for a living.  Take that moment to tell them a little about dysphagia.

Request to speak at a local health fair.  People are there for health information.  Take advantage of educating the people regarding dysphagia, what is it, who it can affect, signs and symptoms.  The presentation can be as little as five minutes.  You can also provide information about dysphagia at the health fair.  Some county fairs will have hospital booths providing information.  Ask if you can provide information about dysphagia.

Ask to write a guest blog post or start your own blog.  When I started blogging, there were basically no dysphagia blogs.  There are plenty of speech blogs but the dysphagia blogs tend to be on the low side.  You can use a blog to share information about therapy, review journal articles or just to educate the public.

Start a journal club.  Let’s face it, we live in an evidence-based world.  Embrace it.  Learn as much as you can from the evidence to make educated decisions for your patients with dysphagia.

Take a good quality course this month.  Ianessa Humbert has a new course coming in September.  This promises to be a challenging course allowing SLPs to become better at critical thinking in dysphagia assessment and treatment.  Northern Speech Services has great courses available.  Courses are also on sale through June 14!  SpeechPathology.com also offers a wide variety of courses.  CIAO is another company offering some good, quality continuing education courses.  What courses would you recommend for a GREAT quality learning experience?

Make the most of Dysphagia Awareness Month, not just in June, but all year long!

Course Alert-MBSImP

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If you are a clinician working with patients with dysphagia, the Modified Barium Swallow Impairment Profile is an very thorough course.  The MBSImP targets modified barium swallow studies, however the anatomy learned through the course is amazing.

After taking the course, I wrote a review, which you can find here.

The MBSImP is taught by Dr. Bonnie Martin-Harris and available through Northern Speech Services.

The course seems a little costly, but at $600 for 2.1 CEUs it is a great value!

CEU Allied Health-Company Alert

money

If you are looking for a course that is different from the others and affordable, you may want to try CEU Allied Health.

The company is owned by Dr. Eric Blicker and offers a variety of courses.   The price of each course will not cause you to have to take a small loan or sell a family member.  All posted courses are under $30 and most courses are more than an hour in time.

Check out this fairly new company for your CEU requirements!

Course Alert-Head and Neck Cancer

head and neck cancder

Northern Speech Services is offering a new course on head and neck cancer entitled:  Head and Neck Cancer Across the Continuum of Care: Addressing Swallowing Challenges.  The course is taught by Paula Sullivan who is an expert in dysphagia in the cancer population.

Per the NSS website:

This comprehensive online course will provide the participant an in-depth examination of head and neck cancer, its presentation, functional sequelae, evaluation approaches, treatment options, and provide an evidence-based approach of optimal patterns of care for head and neck patients with swallowing dysfunction.  Types of treatment for head and neck cancer and their impact on swallowing and communication function will be described, including both surgical and organ preservation. 

Assessment and evidence-based practice relevant to the head and neck cancer population will provide support for the practitioner in developing a holistic approach to rehabilitation which will optimize functional outcomes and, most importantly, quality-of-life.  Video presentation will be an integral part of this course.  By the completion of this course, the participant will possess a comprehensive understanding of dysphagia management in this challenging and rewarding population. Offered for 0.9 ASHA CEUs – 9 contact hours. 

This is definitely a course on my to-take list!

Has anyone taken this course yet?  If so, let us know what you thought!