Paediatric Speech Pathologists assess, diagnose and treat children with difficulties in the areas of language, speech sounds, voice, stuttering, feeding and swallowing.

Children are seen with the following issues:

  • Feeding - sucking, swallowing or chewing adequately. They may be a fussy eater or find some textures difficult.
  • Speech - producing speech sounds clearly (consonants or vowels). The child can have difficulty making sounds clearly and may be hard to understand.
  • Fluency - producing speech smoothly and at a normal rate, without interruptions or repetitions (e.g. stuttering, cluttering).
  • Language - understanding and using words and sentences. Where the child may have difficulties understanding what is said to them (e.g. following instructions), and/or difficulties expressing themselves (e.g. using correct grammar, vocabulary and sentence structure).
  • Voice - where the child's voice quality may be hoarse, husky or nasal. The Speech Pathologist may refer you to another Speech Pathologist who specialises in this area.

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Eligibility

All clients must meet the following criteria to access Speech Pathology services through North Shore Ryde Child & Family Health.

  • Eligible for Medicare
  • Aged less than 7 years of age.
  • Reside within the North Shore and Ryde local government areas. RNS CHC and Chatswood service the local government areas of Mosman, North Sydney, Willoughby, and Lane Cove. Ryde services the local government areas of Ryde and Hunters Hill.
  • Developmental or cognitive abilities fall within the range of mild delay, borderline, average and above average.
  • Do not qualify for FaHCSIA or Better Start funded services.

Referral

Parents or carers need to phone their local Child and Family Health service to refer their child.  A doctor's (GP) referral is not required.

The phone numbers are:

  • RNS/Chatswood: 02 9462 9200
  • Ryde: 02 9448 6877

Urgent cases

Infants with feeding difficulties are prioritised for assessment appointments.

Other Information

What therapy services are available for children?

To ensure an equitable service for all our clients, the department has a service delivery guideline that all therapists operate within.

The service offered to children is dependent on several factors:

  • their age
  • the type and severity of difficulties they are having.

Therapy options may include individual therapy, home-programs, regular reviews, group therapy and consultation.

Note: You are unable to choose which therapy option you want for your child. The Speech Pathologist is responsible for this and will do so considering your child's needs and the Child & Family Health service delivery guideline. Please be aware that there are waiting lists to access both individual and group therapy.

Can I see a private speech pathologist as well?

We cannot see your child for therapy at the same time that you are seeing another Speech Pathologist from a private practice or other facility.

You can see a private Speech Pathologist or other Speech Pathology service during breaks from therapy at North Shore Ryde Child and Family Health. However, this option should be discussed with your Speech Pathologist.

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RNSH:
Level 2, RNS Community Health Centre, 2C Herbert St, St Leonards, 2065

Chatswood:
Chatswood CHC, 57 Hercules Street, Chatswood 2067

Ryde:
Ryde Child, Family and Adolescent Health Centre, 51 Blaxland Road, Ryde, 2112
Postal:
Level 2, RNS Community Health Centre, 2C Herbert Street, St Leonards, NSW 2065

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8am - 5pm

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