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No, a diagnosis or doctor's note is not required when making a referral to Early Intervention or for a child to receive ongoing Early Intervention services.
After a referral has been made, Early Intervention will ask your permission to contact your child's doctor's office for more information about your child's development. This will not affect whether or not your child qualifies for Early Intervention services.
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The Early Intervention program supports children from birth to 3 years old who have or may be at risk for having a developmental delay.
Children who meet all of the following criteria can get Early Intervention services through York / Adams Early Intervention:
Early Intervention services are free. Early Intervention is an entitlement program, meaning that it is available to all children from birth to age 3. It is funded through federal, state, and county taxes.
Having a developmental delay means that a child is behind with or having trouble meeting certain developmental milestones for their age.
Often there is no specific cause for a developmental delay. Sometimes certain risk factors may play a role, but not always.
Children who have a developmental delay will not necessarily always have one. Some children may need long-term support, while others just need some extra help short-term to help them catch up with their milestones.
If you're concerned about your child, feel free to call York / Adams Early Intervention at 717-771-9893, even if you're not sure if your child has a developmental delay. Early Intervention is free, so you have nothing to lose by calling or making a referral.
Anyone who has concerns about a child's development can make a referral. Early Intervention referrals come from many sources, including parents, grandparents or other family members, daycare providers, doctors offices, and many others. Referrals can be accepted up to 60 days before a child's third birthday.
You can make a referral by calling York / Adams Early Intervention at 717-771-9893. Just let the person you speak with know that you would like to make a referral.
Let the person you speak with know you want to make a referral. You will be asked to give some information, including your child's name, date of birth, and social security number. You will also be asked for your name, address, and phone number. Feel free to ask any questions about Early Intervention when you call.
An Early Intervention service coordinator will be assigned to your child. They will typically contact you a few days after the referral is made to set up an intake meeting. The service coordinator will explain more about Early Intervention, ask more in-depth questions about your child's development, and, with your permission, set up a second meeting for a developmental evaluation.
Your service coordinator and a trained evaluator will meet with you and your child to conduct the developmental evaluation. The evaluation checks five areas of development. This is not a test that your child will pass or fail. It is designed to help determine which areas are your child's strengths and which areas they are struggling with.
The Multi-Disciplinary Evaluation consists of five developmental areas / domains:
A child will qualify for ongoing services if:
If your child does not qualify for ongoing services, the evaluator and the service coordinator can give you advice and recommendations following the evaluation. You can also ask them about the Early Intervention Tracking Program. The Tracking Program allows you and an Early Intervention Service Coordinator to monitor and track your child's development. You can also have Early Intervention reevaluate your child in the future if the concerns persist.
Early Intervention serves children until the age of 3 and can accept referrals up to 60 days before a child's third birthday.
If your child receives ongoing services, you, your service coordinator, and your child's therapists will meet periodically to discuss your child's progress and, as it gets closer to your child's third birthday, if your child may still need services after age 3. If that is the case, your service coordinator will help transition your child to the next program.
Programs that children might transition to at age 3 may include the following: