2003 Conference Proceedings

Go to previous article 
Go to next article 
Return to 2003 Table of Contents 


Lynnette Johnson, MSW, CSW
Site Coordinator
WROCC Outreach Site at
Utah Center for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing
5709 South 1500 West,
Taylorsville, Utah 84123
Phone: (801) 313-6802
Email: lynnettejohnson@utah.gov

The Utah Tele Services Model is an innovative approach using technology to provide service delivery to deaf and hard of hearing individuals. The tele services model is currently being developed and used in the state of Utah. The focus is using Polycom equipment and T1 lines to connect the rural areas (and subsequent gaps in service) with the urban skill set in the field of deafness.

The model combines literature and models from the fields of 1) tele medicine 2) tele health and 3) tele education. Using a combination of these models and background information from disability research specific to deafness, the Utah model creates a spectrum of service provision. This service is designed for the deaf and hard of hearing population and focuses on technology.

The service provision under this model includes, but is not limited to: tele interpreting, tele vocational rehabilitation, tele mentoring for sign language interpreters, tele counseling (tele-psychiatry), and tele case management. The model targets building community alliances in the post-secondary environment through product, service, and practice. Its aim is to improve overall employment outcomes via an innovation in assistive technology.

Community partners include: Vocational rehabilitation partners at sites in: St. George, Provo, Logan, and Taylorsville, Utah; Utah Education Network sites at 10 postsecondary locations throughout the state; Public and Private Interpreter Service and Mentor Providers; Educational partnership with Front Range Community College in Colorado.

The model creates a. Accessibility and Compliance to the Americans With Disabilities Act; b. Empowerment; c. Increased Service Provision through an increase in the volume of qualified service providers to this underserved population. The Utah Tele Services Model uses technology to provide service delivery to deaf and hard of hearing individuals. The combination of technology and disability create the foundation and basis of Utah's model.


Broffman, G. (1995). How can pediatric care be provided in underserved areas? A view of rural pediatric care.; Pediatrics, Oct 95 Part 2 of 2, Vol. 96, Issue 4, p816.

Cain, H.M. & Merrill, Z. (2001). Distance education for master's students with visual impairments: Technology and support. Journal of Visual Impairment & Blindness, Sep2001, Vol. 95, Issue 9, p572.

Greer, E., & Ziebarth, A. (1994). Designing meaningful satellite programs: The many faces of homelessness project. Journal of Extension, 32(4).

Lee, , S.; Seong K.; Jha P.; Levine, B.; Duk-Woo, R. (2000). Telemedicine: Challenges and opportunities. Journal of High Speed Networks, 2000, Vol. 9, Issue 1, p15.

Obbink, K. (1998). Increased Montana opportunities for distance learning. In Paul, L.; Johnson, A., & Cranston, G. (2000). Educational Gerontology, 26: 415-425.

Patterson, J. (2000). Using the internet to facilitate the rehabilitation process. Journal of Rehabilitation, Jan-March, Vol. 66, Issue 1, p11.

Paul, L.; Johnson, A.; & Cranston, G. (2000). A successful videoconference satellite program: Providing nutritional information on dementia to rural caregivers. Educational Gerontology, Jul/Aug2000, Vol. 26: Issue 5, p415-425.

Petracchi, H. (2000). Distance education: What do our students tell us? Research on Social Work Practice, May2000, Vol. 10, Issue 3, p362.

Riemer-Reiss, M. (2000). Vocational rehabilitation counseling at a distance: Challenges, strategies and ethics to consider. Journal of Rehabilitation, Jan-Mar2000, Vol.66, Issue 1, p11.

TelIda 2002. Improving Idaho healthcare access through its healthcare workforce. http://www.isu.edu/irh/telida//

Go to previous article 
Go to next article 
Return to 2003 Table of Contents 
Return to Table of Proceedings

Reprinted with author(s) permission. Author(s) retain copyright.