PORTALES—Eastern New Mexico's former Speech and Hearing Clinic is now the Speech and Hearing Rehabilitation Outreach Center. The new name reflects a new focus on providing speech and language therapy as well as hearing evaluations throughout the community.
The communicative disorders program (CDIS) prepares students at Eastern to provide therapeutic and rehabilitative services for those having communication and hearing disorders and differences, in part, through the academic program and, in part, through the clinical program.
According to Suzanne Swift, the department chair, “The decision to change our clinic name occurred to reflect our new expanded abilities to provide help to the community. We have significantly extended the breadth and depth of the services we are able to offer, both diagnostically and therapeutically. Prior to new legislative funding, we did not have all of the equipment or personnel resources to do some of the evaluations or give all the treatments we felt we needed to.
"We could not perform outreach services beyond the four walls of our building very easily, but we are now able to lend assistance to area schools and agencies through contracts with other educational and health care agencies to provide therapies,” Swift said. “We are working on contracts to provide hearing evaluations to veterans and to give services to the elderly residing in nursing homes.”
As well as increasing available equipment, the legislative allocation also allowed the program to increase the number of graduate students allowed in the CDIS program, increase the number and type of clinical practicum opportunities available to these students, and to bring in a new clinical supervisor, Nicole Bougie, from an Amarillo hospital.
The CDIS Department now houses five certified/licensed speech-language pathologists and one certified/licensed audiologist.
For more information about evaluations and treatment, contact the CDIS Department at 505.562.4232.