By John McErleane, Nuvance Health Speech Pathologist
Our voice is more than just a pitch or a sound. The way we speak and how our voice sounds to others is deeply integrated with our identity and is reflected by how others perceive us.
Gender-affirming voice therapy is a service offered at Vassar Brothers Medical Center in Poughkeepsie, NY, to non-binary or transgender individuals who seek a voice that feels authentic and consistent with their gender identity. Services include a holistic and patient-centered approach to communication and voice that is more than raising or lowering the pitch of one’s voice.
Key aspects of this offering are education and instruction on breath support, voice production, pitch, articulation, tone and body language with feedback from the client on what feels authentic to their own identity. Only the individuals themselves can interpret and determine how to express their gender and what qualities of voice feel right to them. The speech language pathologist, as a voice specialist, provides the support and instruction to guide or modify characteristics without putting strain on the vocal cords and risking injury.
Services begin with an in-person evaluation that incorporates voice analysis software, perceptual measures and feedback from self-questionnaires to help develop clinical goals. The speech language pathologist and client work together to develop personalized goals to carry out in treatment sessions, which can be completed in-person or via telehealth therapy. Services are covered by medical insurance and are available through private pay.
For more information and/or to schedule an appointment, please call (845) 483-7391 or email John McErleane at John.McErleane@nuvancehealth.org.
Learn more about speech therapy services at Nuvance Health.