I stared once again at my long to-do list, which seemed to be growing instead of shrinking, as our moving day loomed closer. The moving van was scheduled to arrive in 3 days to pack up our family of 6 and transport our lives 465 miles away. My phone rang with a local number and I picked up, but was ready to hang up because the pause on the other end made me think it was a telemarketer. Then, a deep bass voice asked to speak with me about voice therapy. Transgender voice therapy. I had a little internal chuckle at the memory of my kickoff client teasing me that once she told all of “her people” about me, that she wouldn’t be able to get in for an appointment! She was not wrong; business had been steady since then. I explained to the caller that I was literally moving that week, and would not be able to take on a new client. Again, a pause. And then a question that would also greatly shape the trajectory of my private practice: “Ok, then can we meet online?” It was my turn to pause.
I had been teaching speech pathology courses at the college level since 2004, and began teaching online courses in 2011. I lectured online, held student conferences online, participated in faculty meetings online, and offered office hours online. I enjoyed it. I was even good at it. So, why not provide voice therapy online? Telepractice is a relatively new concept in my field of speech-language pathology, and was recognized by our governing body as a viable service delivery method in 2005, (see the American Speech-Language Hearing Association’s telepractice position statement) although telemedicine has been around since the late 1960s. It’s obviously grown in leaps and bounds with technology advances since then. I agreed to start with her just as soon as we had settled in. Once I had successfully found the moving box with my headset, and we had internet at our new house, we set up a time to meet online and try it out. It went off without a hitch, and my telepractice was successfully launched! I’ve worked with clients now from coast to coast, and love what a win-win it is.
If this is something you’re interested in, or curious if this could work for you, contact me to schedule a “meet & greet.” We can meet online to try all of it out, and most importantly see if working with me would be a good fit for you! Click here to contact me.
Dr. Joy Musser, Ph.D. CCC-SLP is a licensed Speech-Language Pathologist by the state of New York and holds her national certificate with the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association. She holds a doctoral degree from the University of Cincinnati and has over 18 years of clinical experience. Musser Therapies, LLC and Musser Voice were formed in 2010 with the goal to provide quality voice therapy. Dr. Musser specializes in voice feminization for the transfemale population via telepractice. In addition, she teaches voice disorders and related course work online for several universities across the country.