The Pulse

Valerie Middleton, MA CCC-SLP

Valerie Middleton, MA CCC-SLP
Valerie is a Clinical Program Consultant for Accelerated Care Plus (ACP). She graduated Summa Cum Laude from Appalachian State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in 2006 and Master of Arts degree in 2008 in Communication Disorders with a concentration in Speech Language Pathology. Since 2008, Valerie has practiced speech-language pathology in skilled nursing facilities (SNF) and has worked as the director of SNF rehabilitation services for OT, PT, and SLP from 2012-2016. Valerie holds certifications and competences in the McNeill Dysphagia Therapy Program, NMES, sEMG biofeedback for dysphagia, and myofascial release and manual stretching techniques in dysphagia rehabilitation. ASHA recognized her passion for continued learning with an ACE (Award for Continuing Education) in 2015 and 2018. She is a member of the ASHA Special Interest Group 13, Swallowing and Swallowing Disorders and Special Interest Group 15, Gerontology. Currently, Valerie is combining her love for dysphagia rehabilitation and mentorship through her role with ACP. Her focus is on training and educating SLPs in how to improve outcomes in dysphagia rehabilitation through adjunctive use of surface electromyography (sEMG) in EBP.

Recent Posts

Evidence Based Practice in Swallowing Rehabilitation - 3 Part Series (part 3)

Posted by Valerie Middleton, MA CCC-SLP on Feb 24, 2021 11:51:52 AM

Part 3: What about My Clinical Judgement?

We bring our EBP series discussion to a close with consideration of clinical expertise/expert opinion. This component of the triangle may be defined as “The knowledge, judgment, and critical reasoning acquired through [your] training and professional experiences” (ASHA, 2020).

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Topics: Dysphagia

Evidence Based Practice in Swallowing Rehabilitation - 3 Part Series (part 2)

Posted by Valerie Middleton, MA CCC-SLP on Jan 22, 2021 1:02:01 PM

Part 2: Implementing Internal and External Evidence

We began our discussion on employing evidence-based practice (EBP) in swallowing rehabilitation during the spring newsletter, with careful consideration for upholding ethics in treatment and focusing on patient perspective. Let’s continue by delving deeper into incorporation of evidence in dysphagia therapy. ASHA defines the implementation of evidence as “The best available information gathered from the scientific literature (external evidence) and from data and observations collected on your individual client (internal evidence).” ASHA’s recommended EBP process includes the following steps: Frame the clinical question, gather evidence, assess the evidence, and make the clinical decision (ASHA 2020).

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Topics: Dysphagia

Evidence Based Practice in Swallowing Rehabilitation - 3 Part Series

Posted by Valerie Middleton, MA CCC-SLP on Dec 19, 2020 11:05:11 AM

Not unique to the field of Speech-Language Pathology, integration of Evidence Based Practice (EBP) is a hot topic and is essential in ensuring we are practicing at the top of our profession. Let’s begin by reviewing the three characteristics comprising the EBP triangle as outlined by the National Joint Committee for the Needs of Persons with Disabilities (NJC): (a) clinical expertise/expert opinion, (b) external scientific evidence, and (c) the perspectives of individuals with severe disabilities and their families and friends to provide high-quality services reflecting the interests, values, needs, and choices of the individuals we serve (NJC, n.d.). Over the next few months, we will discuss each of these areas in more detail. Although patient value and perspective is listed last, we will address this first, as this is an area worth consistent reflection and application.

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Topics: Dysphagia

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