Early Intervention

 

UCP’s Early Intervention program focuses on identifying developmental delays in children from birth to three years of age and providing proper therapy to fit their needs. The program is strictly voluntary on the part of the child’s family and no fees are charged for services provided. (For more about typical development of children in this age group, please visit Zerotothree.org).

UCP of Huntsville & Tennessee Valley, Inc. is a member of the Alabama Early Intervention System, a program of Alabama Department of Rehabilitation Services. Referrals to Early Intervention are accepted directly from parents, childcare providers, physicians and others. You may call UCP at 256-852-5600 to make a referral, or you may contact the Alabama Child Find toll-free number at 1-800-543-3098.

A service coordinator is made available for families who qualify to help identify concerns and goals for their child. Service coordinators are knowledgeable about available community supports and services, as well as EI law, and will act as advocates for the families they assist. The primary goal of all service coordinators is to assist families in identifying and planning for needed supports and services.

In Alabama, a child is eligible for EI services and supports if he or she is under the age of three and a 25 percent delay is indicated during an evaluation and assessment in one or more of the following five developmental areas:

  • Cognitive
  • Communicative
  • Physical
  • Adaptive
  • Social/emotional

A child is also eligible for services and supports if he has a diagnosis or a condition that likely will result in a delay in development.

Eligible children and their families are often referred to United Cerebral Palsy of Huntsville & Tennessee Valley, Inc. for such services and supports. The service coordinators and specialists at UCP are here to help you understand those things that you can do to get your baby off to the best possible start just by using your everyday interactions to teach the basic skills that he or she will need.

Pediatric physical, occupational and speech therapy, as well as special instruction, are provided in the child’s natural environment as much as possible. This helps achieve developmental goals in settings that are both familiar and functional to the child.

The child’s progress is evaluated periodically and therapy continues until the child’s third birthday or until he or she meets developmental goals. If further therapy is needed, the child could continue with UCP’s Outpatient Program, which requires billing of insurance or Medicaid. The child could also be referred to the school system for additional services.

In conjunction with the Early Intervention program, UCP offers a developmental play group for children 12 months to 3 years old. UCP offers two different play groups that last for 1 hour and 15 minutes. These play groups provide children with enjoyable learning experiences such as circle time, arts and crafts, music, stories and snack time.Playgroups also have several planned outings throughout the year.

A weekly Preschool Readiness group is also offered for children ages 2 ½ -4 years old.

For more information about Early Intervention, please contact UCP at 256-852-5600 or email therapy@ucphuntsville.org.

Milestone Moments

 

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