Hudson Valley Parent

HVP October 2014

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22 Hudson Valley Parent ■ October 2014 child will be trained in the five areas of child development: motor, language, social, adaptive, and cog- nitive. After the evaluation, she will share the results in a written report to parents. "This allows parents to see not only what their children are doing well, but also to pick up any concerns that they might not have been aware of yet," says Coyle. To qualify for services, a child must show a 25 per- cent delay in two of the development areas, or a 33 percent delay in one. How much does it cost? Early intervention services are free for families. "The service coordinators will ask for your insurance, as some insur- ances will be billed as long as it is New York State regulated and does not go against the child's lifetime cap," says Stedge. What if my child is ineligible? If your child was found ineligible for services, but you are still con- cerned, you can typically request a re-evaluation after six months. "The original report received from the first round of evaluations lists the next stages in development and activities that parents can do to foster development," says Coyle. "Using those guidelines, you can spend more time engaging in those developmental play activities." Stedge notes that you can also find a private therapist. Start early If your child's speech is the only developmental area that worries you, it's still a good idea to request a comprehensive evaluation, given that all areas of human development are connected. The evaluation will diagnose which factors are affecting your child's speech and in how many "Don't hesitate to get your child evaluated. If he needs services, you will not only get help for your child, but you will gain a support system of people who are all root - ing for him to progress. It is a won- derful program filled with fantastic professionals." — Amanda Merzbach, Westtown "The hardest thing is making that first phone call, but everything after that has been nothing short of car- ing, kind, supportive and encourag- ing on my little guy's behalf. I can't wait to see what is in store for him!" — Marci Wade, Warwick "My advice would be: Don't be in denial. It's not about you, it's about what's best for your child. Start young and be consistent. Early in- tervention is the key to preventing and correcting many issues. It can only help, not hurt." — Christine Guerrier, Pine Bush "I used to work for EI and for a human services agency serving children with EI. I think asking professionals with more expertise than myself was the best option for my kids. I was having difficulty understanding what was tipping off their behavior. Turns out my twins are delayed in both gross and fine motor skills. I had no idea. One also has a mild sensory processing disorder, which I also had no clue. Our experience was very positive. Everything moved along pretty quickly and it wasn't a fight to get what my kids need. In my previous work as an advocate I saw some families really having to fight. I am so thankful our district has been so willing to work with us." — Roxanne Ferber, Saugerties "My son was 2 and we felt he had delayed speech. We came to find out he had fluid behind his ear. Between the treatment and speech therapy, he has done a 180. I recommend parents ask questions if there is a concern. You are with your child more than anyone, so you should have that gut feeling." — Christopher Michael, Poughkeepsie "My now 13-year-old son, who was diagnosed with cerebral palsy when he was a few weeks old, received it for three years. We were told that he would never walk in his life, but with all of the therapy he received from EIP you would never know he had any type of disability! My 4-year-old son has gotten speech therapy for the past three years. He is now in kindergarten and he has made great strides with his speech delay due to him being tongue-tied and having to have surgery to loos - en the skin under his tongue. If you have a therapist who is not a match with your child's personality, move on to the next therapist until you find your perfect match that will help your child achieve his goals. I have many reasons to be apprecia - tive to the EIP!" — Kathy Brooks, Beacon For more advice from local parents, visit HVP Chatroom: Advice from local parents EARLY INTERVENTION (Continued from Page 20)

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