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Speech and Language Outpatient clinic

This clinic is for patients of all ages and is an opportunity for your speech and language therapist to provide support / recommendations tailored to your child’s needs.

The speech and language therapists within this team specialise in working with children with palatal problems. If your child has been born with an isolated cleft lip (a cleft lip without a cleft palate), they are unlikely to develop speech difficulties as a result of their cleft.

What to expect

Around the time of your baby’s palate surgery, you will be invited here to attend an Early Advice session. This will be the first appointment where you meet with a speech and language therapist only (as opposed to meeting with them as part of the wider team). The session is informal and play-based and will allow you to ask any questions you might have.

Following their review at the Toddler clinic, your child may be invited for some sessions with a speech and language therapist to help them expand the range of sounds they are making. Many children who have been born with a cleft palate, or palatal problems, require some help to develop their best speech. The speech and language therapist will advise you if and when this is required.

Sometimes a block of therapy sessions will be recommended. To begin, the speech and language therapist will spend some time listening to and playing with your child to assess their speech. They will then work together with you to create opportunities for your child to learn new sounds. The speech and language therapist will show you age appropriate activities to try at home and provide resources. As your child makes progress, the speech and language therapist will show you new ways and new activities to help your child continue to achieve clearer speech. It is important that you try the tasks at home to help your child use their new sounds in different situations.

Often the speech and language therapists at the hospital will ask for support from your local speech and language therapy team, and will keep in touch with them regarding your child’s progress. For more information, see speech and language therapy.


Children's Outpatients
Level LG1, Children’s Hospital
John Radcliffe Hospital

John Radcliffe Hospital address and travel information

On arrival please go to the reception desk to register. We will call you and your child from the waiting area for your appointment.