Saturday, January 10, 2015

Android and iOS app: Constant Therapy

Constant Therapy App
Apps: iPad Constant Therapy app on iTunes (free)
Android Constant Therapy app on Google Play (free)
Website: constanttherapy.com

What it is: A Speech Therapy tool for Cognitive-Communicative rehab. The app includes a large variety of language and cognitive tasks that can be customized to complexity level of your clients. It is free for clinicians, researchers and students; clients have to buy a subscription.

Here is how it works: As a clinician you would have this app on your device (again, for you an account is free). When you have a client with cog-com goals, you would create an account for them on your device (this is all still free). You would choose appropriate tasks customized to your client's diagnosis and severity, functional needs and skills.

The variety of their tasks is extremely satisfying. For language they have tasks for auditory compr, naming, writing, reading and sentence planning; for cognition they have attention, visual processing, mental flexibility, memory, problem solving and executive skill tasks. This list does not do justice to the variety and creativity of these tasks. I'm not sure the exact number but I counted 34 language tasks and 31 cognition tasks. To get a better idea very quickly, I urge you to hop over to this page and just glance at these tasks (when you mouse-over any task, it shows you a screen shot): http://constanttherapy.com/constant-therapy-tasks.

In Tx: The program allows you to select which tasks to use with your client, and at the level of each task you can adjust the complexity. You then get a baseline for each task for the individual client, and the program continues to keep track of progress (as well as usage). There's too many activities that address a large variety of goals to go into detail here. What I can say is that the activities I've seen and tried are created almost exactly how I would have conceptualized them, and I found it was very intuitive how to explain the clinical justification for spending time on these to patients and their families. Also, CT's website discusses Evidence Based Practice (EBP) implementation.

Outside Tx: You can select the tasks you want as "homework" for your client. This is where their own subscription becomes beneficial: The clients that can continue to complete these tasks outside of the therapy session can purchase a subscription (http://constanttherapy.com/pricing). They should do it using the account you create for them in session, so that the homework you assign can show up in their account, and their progress with tasks in sessions and on their own can be tracked (from within the account of the clinician that originally created their login). This extends your therapy outside the session: you, the SLP, are making clinically-informed choices re which tasks are most appropriate and beneficial, and are able to modify your decision based on progress feedback. Very few tools allow this kind of flexibility for clinicians to address patient needs beyond the therapy session.

My experience: I've used it only with adults for both cognitive and language intervention. I found it extremely age-appropriate, interesting and motivating. My clients seemed to enjoy the tasks, and I can't say enough about the ability to track progress in such an individualized (per client, per goal, per task) manner. A few outpatients have purchased a subscription and they (and their spouses) report good motivation to work on tasks at home.

Bottom line: I can absolutely recommend this program/service to both clinicians and clients. For the clinician, you will find this to be one of your most used apps on your tablet. For the client, based on the prices in 2014-2015 the feedback I've received is that it is well worth it.

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