Aphasia is a neurological disorder caused by damage to the areas of the brain that are responsible for language processing. Apart from causing impairments in comprehension and expression across verbal, written, and signed modalities, aphasia has been reported to reduce one’s social engagement and, consequently, psychosocial well-being. This study investigated how COVID-19 lockdowns in Hong Kong had psychological effects on persons with aphasia (PWAs), their caregivers, and healthy adults and impacted their communication activities. A survey study was conducted using a 70-item questionnaire that collected information on participants’ knowledge about COVID-19, communication, and community involvement pre- and post-outbreak, and self-rated psychological well-being. Results indicated that all groups were affected in terms of their social engagement, but PWAs demonstrated more challenges in understanding the pandemic and were more psychosocially burdened. A subset of PWAs were re-interviewed two months after the initial interview, and their responses revealed changes in outdoor activity patterns and increased psychosocial distress. The implications of these findings for improving aphasia services are discussed.
|Title of host publication||COVID-19 and Speech-Language Pathology|
|Number of pages||22|
|Publication status||Published - 15 Sep 2022|
|Name||Routledge Research in Speech-Language Pathology|