About this Issue: Communication Support for Adults Who Are Communication Vulnerable
This issue of Topics in Language Disorders raises awareness of communicative barriers and the importance of providing appropriate means to support participation by adults who are communication vulnerable due to neurogenic conditions that affect their speech production, language skills, or memory and cognition. Issue editor, Dr. David Beukelman, conceptualized the issue on the topic of “Communication Support for Adults who are Communication Vulnerable” and assembled authors who could address the topic from varied angles. First, Burns, Baylor, Dudgeon, Starks, and Yorkston (2017) discuss accommodation theory as it relates to effective communication in medical settings for people with complex communication needs. Nordness and Beukelman (2017) follow with a description of effective policies and procedures related to patient–provider communication for medical settings. King and Simmons-Mackie (2017) next provide an overview of communication supports designed to benefit people with people with varied types of aphasia. Then, Lanzi, Burshnic, and Bourgeois (2017) describe the implementation of communication supports as part of a comprehensive, person-centered care plan across the continuum of care for people with dementia. Finally, Hanson and Fager (2017) describe essential elements of effective patient – provider communication for medical settings designed to facilitate information exchange between medical professionals and people with complex communication needs resulting from motor speech disorders, some of which can make spoken output impossible but leave language comprehension intact. The articles in this issue should contribute to research and policy discussions about improving communication supports and their availability in health care settings and other contexts.
Sarah E. Wallace, Ph.D., Associate Editor
Nickola Wolf Nelson, Ph.D., Editor-in-Chief