The DGPP organizes annual scientific congresses and workshops in Germany, Austria, and Switzerland. Certified tutorials are offered in the run-up to the congresses, including topics on voice disorders, pediatric hearing impairment, auditory perceptive disorders, impaired speech and language development, and swallowing disorders.
Every year the DGPP publishes its activities in the “DGPP-Mitteilungen” (DGPP news). In the “Phoniatrisch-pädaudiologische Aspekte” (phoniatric-pedaudiological aspects) it publishes the congress proceedings of the annual conferences with. These papers are available free of charge under www.egms.de
In many German states, a “Landesarzt für Menschen mit Sprach- und Hörbehinderung” (Federal Physician for People with Speech and Hearing Disorders) is appointed. This is regularly a doctor specialized in phoniatrics and pediatric audiology. These physicians and other colleagues are also active in schools for the hearing impaired in an advisory capacity.
The DGPP was the founder of the German Central Registry for Children with Hearing Loss at the Charité-Universitätsmedizin, Berlin, which collects epidemiological data on children identified with a permanent hearing loss. Moreover, the DGPP is one of the main supporters of the German “Joint Committee on infant hearing”.
One of the main areas of work of the DGPP is newborn hearing screening.
It was DGPP members who tested and implemented newborn hearing screening programs, founded and currently manage hearing screening centres in various states and contributed significantly to the implementation of national hearing screening programs in Germany, Austria and Switzerland. Currently, the main tasks of the phoniatricians-pedaudiologists are to perform follow-up diagnostics and initiate timely therapy for babies who have failed the newborn hearing screening. Furthermore, DGPP members founded the Association of German Hearing Screening Centres, which organizes, standardizes and coordinates the activities of the state hearing screening centres.
Several phoniatricians-pedaudiologists chair or are associated to Social-pediatric Centres (Sozialpädiatrische Zentren, SPZ) in which several thousand children with communication disorders are diagnosed and treated every year. A high proportion of these are children with speech and language or ear and hearing disorders, especially children with multiple disabilities or global developmental retardations, which also include ear and hearing disorders. The tasks of phoniatricians-pedaudiologists therefore include far-reaching interdisciplinary communication with parents, hearing aid acousticians, educators, teachers, speech-language pathologists/logopedists, geneticists, radiologists, paediatricians, ophthalmologists, ENT doctors, and other medical disciplines.
Many phoniatricians are active in the field of the medical care for professional singers and lay musicians, as well as for people who use their voice professionally, such as teachers, actors etc.
Another focus of the DGGP is the diagnosis and treatment of swallowing disorders. The DGPP provides tutorials to acquire a certificate for the standardized diagnostic of deglutition disorders.
One of the main focuses of the DGPP is the development and updates of national scientific guidelines or the contribution to guidelines on topics related to communication disorders. The DGPP extensively contributes to the guidelines published by the Association of the Scientific Medical Societies in Germany (AWMF).
These guidelines are systematically developed aids for physicians, other medical staff, and patients to make decisions in specific situations. They are based on current scientific findings and procedures proven in practice and ensure greater safety in medicine, but should also take economic aspects into account. The DGPP regularly holds consensus conferences on various topics. The statements, consensus decisions and guidelines are posted on the DGPP website.
With these and the above-mentioned activities, the DGPP has many tasks to fulfil in the field of public health.