Developmental Delays Following Birth Addressed Through New York State Department of Health Early Intervention
In the State of New York, children with developmental delays following birth are referred to the New York State Department of Health "Early Intervention" Program.
To be eligible for services, a child must be less than three years old and have a "confirmed disability" or "established development delay" that is (1) physical, (2) cognitive, (3) communicative, (4) social-emotional, and/or (5) adaptive.
Following an evaluation and development of an individualized family service plan (IFSP) services begin almost immediately. Typically within days.
"Many of our clients receive services from Early Intervention," said New York cerebral palsy lawyer Michael A. Bottar, Esq., of Syracuse-based Bottar Leone, PLLC. "EI does a great job providing physical, occupational and speech therapy to children diagnosed with cerebral palsy, Erb's palsy, Down syndrome and other physical/cognitive deficits including blindness, deafness, and poor muscle tone or feeding. It is comforting to know that children, many of whom have disabilities because of something that went wrong during childbirth, have a safety net."
In addition to therapy, EI provides family education and counseling, parent support groups, audiology, psychological services, nursing services, nutrition services, vision services, social work services and assistive technology devices and services. Additional detail about EI can be found in The Parent's Guide to Early Intervention (pdf).