A Day In The Life Of An Independent Speech And Language Therapist
I often get asked how many clients/children I see per working day or what my working day/life looks like. I always reply that every day is different, which is true, but there is a sort of average working day which looks a bit like this:
I usually start preparing for my first client of the day at around 9.30 am: I clean the room, wipe down all the toys and materials (that’s if they are coming to my clinic room) and then it takes me about 30 minutes to select and sometimes make suitable materials, games and activities for the child’s therapy programme. Client arrives at 10.30 am and the fun begins. They leave around 11.30am, and the cleaning and wiping down starts again – yes it’s the pandemic but to be fair I would do this anyway. I quickly write up my notes and send home work to the client via email. Now it’s 12 noon and I start preparing for the next client at 12.30 pm. This might be online parent-child interaction coaching and so I need different materials and activities that are suitable for teletherapy. We finish around 1.30 pm and I will write up my notes before having some lunch.
Lunch tends to not be around 30 minutes. Around 2.00 pm I start prepping again for the next client: selecting activities, going over their last session, making sure I have everything I need to start at 2.45pm – we finish at 3.45pm, I write up my notes and then have a cuppa. The next client might be more on-line coaching or a child coming to see me: room cleaned and tidy, materials and activities prepared: client arrives at 4.30 pm and we finish at 5.30 pm. I clean the toys again, write up my notes and it is 6.00 pm ready for dinner. So that was four clients between 9 am and 6pm allowing for preparation, aftercare, cleaning and coffee and lunch.
Other days I might see three clients and do more admin like ordering toys or books or teletherapy activities, or making materials (we therapist make tons of materials, we’d put Blue Peter to shame!) Sometimes I do two home visits, one in the morning and one in the afternoon – the travelling/parking in London is so time consuming that it really reduces the number of clients I can see which is why I don’t do many of those.
I hand pick my clients to make sure that we are a good fit, and my service is bespoke: no one client gets the same treatment as another; each client is unique, usually very well-known and always highly valued. That takes time and means that in reality each client gets about 2 hours of my time, that is the actual session plus all the preparation and aftercare.
I love this way of working and would not ever want to return to seeing tons of clients each day, not knowing any of them really well, due to high caseload numbers, staff shortages and an overload of administration.
My way of working affords all my lovely clients the help they need to be able to feel empowered and to then support their children to make progress; when working with children they make the best progress they can make, fulfilling their potential. My lovely reviews and testimonials tell me that my clients appreciate the extra attention.
Find a speech and language therapist for your child in London. Are you concerned about your child’s speech, feeding or communication skills and don’t know where to turn? Please contact me and we can discuss how I can help you or visit my services page.