Care of the Voice
The Field of Arts Medicine began in 1987 as a field of medical care. Professional Voice Care falls under the umbrella of this field.
Arts Medicine Team Management
Professional Voice Care Team:
Laryngologist, Speech-language Pathologist, and singing voice specialist. Additional members may include a voice scientist, acting-voice trainer, stress manager/speaking coach and a medical psychologist.
The role of the singing voice specialist in the team management of voice patients includes four main facets.
The first is as a liaison between
(a) patient and laryngologist,
(b) patient and the voice scientist,
(c) patient and speech-language pathologist, and
(d) patient and the voice teacher.
The second is as an educator. Education includes helping the patient understand the anatomy and physiology of phonation, what his/her diagnosis means for the current function of the singing voice, and what to expect vocally. This education will aid in reduction of the patient’s anxiety level and help him/her cope emotionally.
The third facet is as a trainer. A trainer helps the professional voice user to maximize the balance of the vocal system. The term trainer is synonymous with an athlete. If a professional athlete has a physical problem then he/she would most likely see a sports medicine specialist for therapy to mediate the problem. The singer is a vocal athlete. Since there is no licensure for a singing voice specialist, legally the term therapist is not advocated.
The fourth facet is as a problem solver. This facet will vary greatly depending on the patient’s area of expertise. It may include discussing
(a) lesson plans, classroom management, and classroom layout with the music educator,
(b) rehearsal preparation, rehearsal style and conducting techniques with the choral director, and
(c) character development with the professional performer and how this affects the voice.
Additionally, there are elements of counseling that occur during a session.