American Speech-Language-Hearing Association

Core Messages

In an era of growing competition for limited health care dollars, it is important to have clear, simple messages to help SLPs position themselves as the exclusive providers of services for communication and swallowing disorders.   The following messages are intended for use by ASHA-certified SLPs and ASHA in describing their services and qualifications.  

General messages

  • ASHA-certified SLPs are the only health care professionals specifically educated and prepared to evaluate and treat children and adults with speech, language, and swallowing problems.  
  • ASHA-certified SLPs are the only health care professionals who possess either a master's or doctoral degree from an accredited program, complete a postgraduate clinical fellowship, and pass a national examination to receive their professional credential: the Certificate of Clinical Competence in Speech-Language Pathology (CCC-SLP) from the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association.
  • You can be sure that your patients receive appropriate and effective treatment for a speech, language, or swallowing disorder by referring them to an ASHA-certified SLP.
  • The benefits of treatment by ASHA-certified SLPs are measured and documented by a statistically validated national treatment outcomes database (National Outcomes Measurement System - NOMS).
  • Decisions about which rehabilitation profession should provide a particular service should be based on objective, competency-based factors such as academic preparation, clinical experience, and the scientific-research foundation of the profession.

Communication messages

  • ASHA-certified SLPs provide professional services that help people express what they want to say and understand what is being said to them.
  • ASHA-certified SLPs help people develop effective speaking and listening skills, which are fundamental skills necessary for success in personal, academic, and professional relationships.
  • Effective speaking and listening skills ("communication skills") are the fundamental skills necessary for success in personal, academic, and professional relationships.   ASHA-certified SLPS are the only health care professionals specifically educated and prepared to help people develop or recover effective communication skills.
  • Re-establishing reliable, functional communication is the first rehabilitation priority after proper medical management to assure that the patient understands the care being provided and the options that may exist, is able to express his or her questions and preferences, and can participate optimally in the rehabilitation program.

Swallowing messages

  • ASHA-certified SLPS have the in-depth academic preparation, clinical experience, and research-based knowledge to make them the preferred provider of swallowing treatment.
  • Safe and efficient swallowing is vital to preventing pneumonia-related deaths, maintaining nutritional well-being, and preserving the pleasures associated with eating.

Share This Page

Print This Page