|2 February 2016|

A Scottish woman, who lost her speech after she was diagnosed with the debilitating motor neurone disease (MND), says that new technology has been a real lifeline.

Former English teacher, Liz Ogg, who has two daughters and three granddaughters, is writing an inspiring and thought-provoking blog to help others in the same difficult situation.

Liz first experienced problems with her speech three years ago and within a year she lost her ability to speak altogether.

In the first instalment of her ‘Ogg Blog’, Liz, who always loved to talk, describes how mobile phone voice apps have helped her chat with friends and family after losing her voice to the disease.

“I have notebooks and pens left at several points around the house and in my bag, to allow me to have my say. But what has really set me free is the use of my Android phone and iPad to speak through voice Apps.

“There are Apps which you can buy, but I’ve found the best for voice quality is ‘Type and Speak’, and it’s free to download. There’s a selection of voices to choose from, depending on where you come from, and they’re free to download too.

“I’ve become quicker at typing in what I want to say and joining in any conversation. My friends have got used to me waving my phone in the air to get their attention!”

Craig Stockton, CEO from MND Scotland, said: “ “It is amazing how new technologies can be adapted to help people in her situation. Liz uses her own smart phone and tablet to help her communicate, however we feel everyone with MND should have access to assistive technology. We have been campaigning to ensure this is a statutory right. We are delighted that the first minister announced, in September 2015, that the Scottish Government will introduce a mandatory right to communications equipment. This amendment to the Health Bill will be going through Parliament right now.

“MND Scotland also has an equipment loan service, with a variety of assistive technologies, for people who have MND to make use of. We have a wealth of experience in our charity and lots of other ideas and tips to help with MND, so if you would like to know more check out our website – www.mndscotland.org.uk.”

To read more of Liz’s blog please visit: www.lizmnd.blogspot.com.