MAIN REPORTS

Our Main Report Speakers are our Keynote/Plenary speakers.

The committee have selected our Main Report speakers to reflect our global audience with the discussants to encourage debate and exchange during the sessions.

The overall congress theme is Together Towards Tomorrow.

Technological Advances in Assessment and Intervention of Swallowing Disorders in the Digital Era


Towards equitable hearing health care: Innovations in technology and service-delivery


Intervention with Multilingual Children


Prof Georgia Malandraki, Greece

Prof Georgia Malandraki, Greece

Main Report Speaker

Dr. Georgia A. Malandraki is an Associate Professor of Speech, Language, and Hearing Sciences at Purdue University. She is also a Board-Certified Specialist in Swallowing and Swallowing Disorders and the Research Director of the Purdue I-EaT Swallowing Research Laboratory and Clinic. In addition to her primary appointment at Purdue, Dr. Malandraki also holds Visiting Professorships at the Universities of Athens and Macedonia in Greece, and at the Katholieke Universiteit, Leuven in Belgium.

Her research focuses on investigating developmental and treatment swallowing neuroplasticity and developing rehabilitative and telehealth interventions for patients with swallowing disorders (dysphagia). She is the developer of the Intensive Dysphagia Rehabilitation Approach (IDRA), as well as the co-founder of a start-up which focuses on the commercialization of novel wearable technologies that aid in the tele-treatment of dysphagia. Dr. Malandraki’s work has been funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIDCD and NIBIB) of the United States, the American Academy of Cerebral Palsy and Developmental Medicine, and several mechanisms through the Purdue Research Foundation. Among others, she has been awarded the ASHA Early Career Research Contributions Award (2011), the Purdue University College of Health and Human Sciences Early Career Research Achievement Award (2019), and the NIH NIBIB R21 Trailblazer Award (2019). Dr. Malandraki has served on the Editorial Board of ASHA Journals, and is currently an Editor for AJSLP and the President-Elect of the Dysphagia Research Society. To learn more about Dr. Malandraki’s work, please visit her laboratory’s website: https://www.purdue.edu/i-eatlab/


Main Report Discussants:

Prof Louise Hickson , Australia

Dr Vidya Ramkumar, India


Abstract:

Swallowing is one of the most complex neurophysiological functions of the human body. When disrupted and the ability to eat is compromised, the effects in health and quality of life can be detrimental, highlighting the critical importance of timey and accurate assessment and intervention. In the past ~40 years, the field of swallowing science and clinical care has made significant strides in increasing our understanding of this complex neurophysiological act and how to evaluate and treat swallowing disorders, however critical gaps in knowledge and practice remain. Living in what appears to be peak of the Digital Era, the value of using technological advances to further improve our understanding of swallowing control, as well as our ability to more effectively diagnose and treat dysphagia cannot be overstated. In this presentation, recent state-of-the-art technological advances in dysphagia science, diagnosis, and treatment will be detailed. Emphasis will be given to the development and use of wearable sensors technologies, novel neuroimaging applications, and personalized care approaches for dysphagia that have been emerging. The status, considerations, and promise of these technologies as catalysts for the future of dysphagia care will be discussed.  

Prof De Wet Swanepoel, South Africa

Prof De Wet Swanepoel, South Africa

Main Report Speaker

De Wet Swanepoel is professor in the Department of Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology, University of Pretoria and senior researcher at the Ear Science Institute Australia. Prof Swanepoel’s research capitalises on the growth in information and communication technologies to explore, develop and evaluate innovative technologies and service delivery models to improve ear and hearing care. He has published more than 200 peer-reviewed articles, books and book chapters and is funded by the NIH, UK Academy of Medical Sciences, National Research Foundation, industry and has received numerous national and international awards in recognition of his work. Prof Swanepoel serves as Editor-In-Chief of the International Journal of Audiology, and founder of a digital health company called the hearX group.

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Main Report Discussants:

Dr Jamie R. Leigh, Australia

Prof Greg O’Beirne, New Zealand


Abstract:

Hearing loss is a neglected global health priority affecting 1.5 billion persons. Globally access to hearing care is severely limited with treatments like hearing aids inaccessible to most. The cost and centralised nature of traditional service-delivery approaches in hearing care have undermined equitable access. Recent innovations in digital and mHealth hearing technologies are, however, enabling novel community-based services through task shifting across the continuum of care. Recent examples of technology-enabled hearing care in communities demonstrate cost-effective services scalable across primary, secondary and tertiary levels of prevention. Hearing health innovations have the potential to increase access to care, improve the quality of life for those affected by hearing loss and reduce global costs associated with untreated hearing loss. More equitable hearing care is a global health priority that requires scalable services in communities enable by innovative technologies and accompanied by public health promotion.

Prof Gail Gillon, New Zealand

Prof Gail Gillon, New Zealand

Main Report Speaker

Professor Gail Gillon, PhD (Ngai Tahu iwi) is the founding director of the Child Well-being Research Institute at the University of Canterbury, Christchurch, New Zealand. Prof Gillon is also the Deputy Director for the Better Start National Science Challenge, E tipu e Rea, which is a 10 year programme of research focused on children’s successful early learning and healthy wellbeing.

Professor Gillon’s research for many years has focused on facilitators of reading success, particularly for children with speech and language disorders or children with dyslexia. Her successful phonological awareness interventions trials are particularly well known. Professor Gillon’s contributions to the field of speech-language therapy have been recognised through her receiving NZSTA Life membership, being named a Fellow of ASHA, and as a recipient of ASHA Editor’s Award for research article of highest merit on three occasions. Recently, Prof Gillon was made a Fellow of the Royal Society of New Zealand for research excellence and she received the prestigious University of Canterbury’s Research Medal in 2020. Prof Gillon is currently Co-leading the Better Start Literacy Approach Project. Following successful pilot trials, this culturally responsive and evidenced based approach to early literacy instruction is currently being implemented in over 1000 new entrant and year 1 classrooms across New Zealand.


Main Report Discussants:

Dr Kate Crowe,  Iceland

Prof Wiebke Scharff Rethfeldt, Germany