The Cheshire model
Simonface are in worldwide consultation with professionals, skilled experts including professors of assistive technology, AAC/AT specialist speech-language pathologists, software authors, hardware manufacturers, carers, and most importantly the people living with Motor Neurone Disease.
Our research starts out in a laboratory in Cheshire UK from where we source and test AAC software and AT hardware products from all over the world.
We are constantly looking for innovative reasonably priced products that are robust in combination, quick to set up and easy to use.
We devise recipes for specific trials in Cheshire based on a combination of hardware and software ingredients.
They all cost under £600, run on a laptop, netbook or tablet usually under windows 7 home premium or iPad2.
Periodically we present "dishes" prepared from our recipes to a tasting panel of interested parties including -
- Committee members of the Cheshire branch of the Motor Neurone Disease Association
- Speech and language therapists
- Selected patients with MND
- Selected carers
- Interested health professionals
The speech and language therapists (SaLTs) are asked to identify any MND sufferers living in Cheshire that may benefit from a trial of the simonface recipe.
- A full assessment is made by the SaLT of the individuals abilities, needs, capabilities and resources
- This includes the number of words per minute achievable with any equipment they may already use
- Simonface formulate a recipe to suit the individual based on this assessment
- A demonstration "simonfacebox" is prepared according to the recipe and tested by simonface
- The SaLT is trained in its use
- The "simonfacebox" is then loaned to the user
- The SaLT and Simonface team oversee the initial home set-up and training of users and carers
- The SaLT monitors the user's adaptation to the recipe
- Trial data is recorded by the user and the SaLT on-line
- Initial trial period may vary from one to three months
- Independent controls to ensure consistent comparison and effective data are regulated by the SaLT model
- A full assessment is made by the SaLT of the usefulness of the AAC recipe including the users comments
- The cost of the recipe is calculated
We simply ask the user, face to face, to tell us what they think of the recipe in their own words. Later we measure the wpm that they are able to read out a standard text ...and check the smile on their face !
If deemed successful and cost effective, simonface publish these findings as a case study and a recipe.