Do you need a speech therapist? Now you can consult AI

Generative AI continues to permeate the medical field and can now help with speech disorders and language skills.
Written by Sabrina Ortiz, Editor
Speech icon above soundwave
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Speech disorders are common, with an estimated 17.9 million US adults reporting to have experienced a problem with their voice during the past 12 months, according to the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders.

Accessibility to specialist resources, such as speech pathologists, is essential to helping patients work through their speech impediments and improve their overall quality of life. 

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Better Speech is one online provider that boosts accessibility by providing speech therapy for children and adults, helping to treat speech delays, voice disorders, aphasia, stuttering, and more from the comfort of an individual's home. 

Now the company is introducing Jessica, a generative AI-powered Speech Therapist, which it hopes will further increase accessibility to provision and reduce costs.

Jessica will use AI algorithms to create personalized therapy sessions for each client's needs. 

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The AI speech assistant will also have advanced speech-recognizing and natural language-processing abilities that can "assess speech patterns, identify areas for improvement, and deliver targeted interventions," according to the company's press release. 

The video below shows a demonstration of Jessica teaching a patient how to pronounce "rabbit" and then giving personalized feedback after hearing the student's response. 

"This revolutionary technology should transform the lives of millions by making high-quality speech therapy accessible and convenient to many people who currently can't afford speech therapy," said Ranan Lachman, CEO of Better Speech. 

Better Speech is working with the American Speech and Hearing Association to create Category III medical insurance codes to help provide more patients with access to the technology.

The company will also gift Jessica to 1,000 children in underdeveloped countries who would otherwise not have access to speech therapy. 

Since Jessica is an AI model, it will become more advanced as it has more interactions with patients, learning and becoming more intelligent every day. 

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Lachman emphasizes that although the tool is very capable and will only become smarter, it is not meant to replace therapists -- yet. 

"Our software is designed to augment our service and serve as a practicing tool, not to replace our speech therapists," said Lachman. 

"We have no doubt that, soon, Jessica will become the best speech therapist in the world, being trained on tens of thousands of patients, from children to seniors, and would be able to assist with most speech impediments."

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