Michael Kidd-Gilchrist founds Change & Impact Initiative for Stuttering

Jack Pilgrim4 months


Aritcle written by:Jack PilgrimJack Pilgrim
IG: @change_and_impact
[caption id="attachment_352240" align="alignnone" width="1182"] IG: @change_and_impact[/caption] The story of Michael Kidd-Gilchrist's struggle with his speech and the stutter he developed as a toddler has been well documented since he first arrived at Kentucky and throughout his professional basketball career. The former Wildcat was diagnosed with developmental stuttering by a licensed and certified speech language pathologist and later began receiving speech therapy services. Due to his struggles, Kidd-Gilchrist was always hesitant to speak up in public settings and avoided interviews. Now 27 years old, Kidd-Gilchrist has founded Change & Impact Initiative for Stuttering in an effort to help those dealing with similar struggles. His goal? To be an example and leader for the stuttering community and show that "imperfection is beautiful." "What I want the public to know about those who stutter is that we are no different," Kidd-Gilchrist said. "When you fall you get up, and you're going to fall again, and you're going to get back up. That is the type of example I want to set and show to my family, my friends and the public eye about those who stutter." The organization's mission is to help improve access to healthcare and expand services and resources for those who stutter. Change & Impact "Why" MKG has a personal connection to stuttering through his own life experiences. In 2020, while spending time in the NBA bubble he began thinking through how to advance his experiences to help others who stutter. Mainly, how to ensure all those who stutter have access to the resources and coverage they deserve and need for speech therapy. Roadblocks to Speech Therapy Coverage - Cost and access to therapy by setting: school vs. medical/private. - Gaps in the establishment of medical need for speech therapy and its continuity of care - Complex healthcare system Change & Impact Goals - Work with key stakeholders to establish a standardized definition for stuttering that has a global reach to all involved in access to healthcare, and services and resources for those who stutter - Collaborate with insurance carriers to identify opportunities for speech therapy coverage - Target efforts towards primary care provider education on understanding speech therapy on referring patients at the right time, to the right specialists, through the right protocols. - Empower families to gain a better understanding on how to navigate the complex healthcare system for speech therapy. - Enhance graduate education for future speech-language pathologists. - Explore research funding to expand outcomes data on the efficacy of speech therapy.
Congratulations and best of luck to MKG on his brand new mission.

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