The UPMC Voice Center is reviving its mission to provide free vocal outreach events in the community.
Prior to COVID, Voice Center team members frequently provided free vocal health and wellness seminars throughout the Greater Pittsburgh area. Providers traveled to schools, churches, musical theater camps, college campuses, etc. to provide education about the voice. Now, in partnership with members of the Communication Science and Disorders Department at the University of Pittsburgh, a new chapter of outreach is just beginning. Right up the street from the UPMC Voice Center (Mercy Hospital) sits the Hill District Pitt Community Engagement Center (CEC). Within these walls lives a growing team of passionate individuals working to create a lineup of free programs, classes, and resources tailored to serve the needs of the community as determined by the residents and stakeholders of the community.
The laryngologists (voice specialized Ear Nose and Throat physicians) and voice specialized speech-language pathologists of the UPMC Voice Center have collaborated with clinicians, professors and speech-language pathology graduate students within the Pitt Communication Science and Disorders (CSD) Department to form the Pittsburgh Voice Consortium (PVC). After great deliberation and consideration of community needs, the PVC and Hill CEC team have created a series of monthly vocal health outreach events that began this past May and will continue through July.
Still in its initial stages, this outreach program aims to provide everything from basic anatomy lessons of the voice box to individual screenings for potential voice concerns. Additionally, the PVC plans to provide education about prevention of voice disorders, recommendations for occupational voice demands as well as discussions surrounding the connection between voice and identity. The goal is to offer educational sessions all year round and continue to inform community members of the various services that the UPMC Voice Center has to offer.