Law, James and Boyle, James and Harris, Frances and Harkness, Avril (1998) Screening for speech and language delay: a systematic review of the literature. Health technology Assessment, 2 (9). pp. 1-184. ISSN 1366-5278
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Official URL: http://www.hta.ac.uk/execsumm/summ209.htm
This report concerns the identification and treatment of children with primary speech and language delays, that is delays which cannot be attributed to other conditions such as hearing loss or other more general developmental disabilities. Such delays are important because they cause concern to parents, because they are commonly associated with behavioural and other difficulties in the pre-school period and because they constitute a risk factor for subsequent poor school performance, and for a wide range of personal and social difficulties for the individuals concerned. It is unclear, given the current state of knowledge, whether such delays represent varying levels of a single condition or a number of different conditions with diverse aetiologies. Currently the identification and treatment of speech and language delays fall within the remit of the health services in the early years of life and most health trusts have in place informal procedures for identifying such delays. The educational services and those responsible for providing nursery and child-care services also have a considerable role to play in the process of identification and management of these children. This review aims to provide the information needed to help decide whether universal screening for speech and language delays should be implemented within the NHS.
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