As a parent, it can be overwhelming to navigate the different resources and services available to support your child's development. If you suspect developmental delay, one important area to consider is Early Intervention. The Early intervention Program in New York City provides home and community-based services and support to children under the age of three who qualify. These programs can play a crucial role in helping your child reach their milestones and guide you in providing the best support possible.

But what exactly is Early Intervention and how do you know if your child is eligible for this program? Early intervention is comprised of a set of services and supports that are provided at the family’s home or in a community-based setting. Services are designed to help children under the age of three who have developmental delays and are found eligible for participation in the program. Services include one onone sessions in the domains of Physical Therapy, Occupational Therapy, Special Education, Social Work, Applied Behavioral Analysis, Speech/Feeding therapy, as well as Family Training.

To determine if your child is eligible for Early Intervention in New York, they will first need to be referred to the program and assigned a Service Coordinator. The Service Coordinator will contact the family, inform the parents/caregivers of their rights and help the child get set up with evaluations conducted by a team of professionals. The evaluations will assess all domains of development in areas such as communication, gross/fine motor skills, sensory processing, cognition and social-emotional development. If the evaluators determines that your child has a delay or disability in one or more areas, they can be found eligible for Early Intervention services.

Once eligibility is determined, a team of professionals will work with you and your child to develop an Individualized Family Service Plan (IFSP). This plan will outline the specific services and supports that your child will receive, as well as the long and short-term goals that will be addressed in order for your child to meet their milestones.

It's important to note that Early Intervention services are provided at no cost to families, and are available to children from birth to age three years old who live in New York. Additionally, families have the right to choose the provider of their choice and can change providers at any time.

Early Intervention is a family-centered program. As such, it is very important for families to be informed and educated on the process so they can be active partners and participants in supporting their children. From the start, parents and caregivers are informed of their rights within the Early Intervention Program. Additionally, they are provided with resources such as parent training workshops, individualized coaching, and support groups. These resources can provide valuable information on topics such as child development, behavior management, and effective communication strategies. They can also provide a supportive environment for parents to share their experiences and gain insight and encouragement from other families who are going through a similar experience.

If you have any concerns about your child's development, don't hesitate to reach out to your pediatrician or contact your local Early Intervention Program for more information. Early Intervention can play a crucial role in helping your child reach their full potential and overcome any challenges they may be facing. And with the support and education provided by these programs, families can feel more confident in their ability to support their child's development at home.