Petition for an improvement in the level of provision of NHS paediatric speech and language therapy in England
Responsible department: Department of Health
We request an improvement in the level of provision of NHS paediatric speech and language therapy in England.
According to I CAN, 1 in 10 children in the UK have communication difficulties requiring specialist help. It is well documented that without early intervention a child's untreated speech difficulties can often lead to a loss of confidence, low self-esteem, behaviour issues born from frustration in trying to communicate with those around them and development of literacy problems when older, affecting their progress through school.
Because of long waiting lists around England for NHS speech and language therapy, these children are either being left to struggle on unaided by a NHS that promises to meet the needs of everyone, or families are being forced to pay for private therapy, which goes against one of the NHS’ core principles that good healthcare should be based on clinical need, not ability to pay.
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