Early Childhood Intervention
If your baby or toddler is showing signs of disability, developmental delay or something that just doesn’t seem quite right, it can be helpful to know there is support available and how you can access it.
The NDIS (National Disability Insurance Scheme) approach to early intervention gives children under seven years of age quick access to support without the requirement for a formal diagnosis.
This support may be needed at home, or in the childcare setting and can go a long way towards setting up the best supports later on down the track.
Children seven years and older need to have a permanent and significant disability to get NDIS support, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t help available before this stage.
Any help or assistance that can help your child in the early years, can go a long way towards a correct diagnostic analysis if required and more importantly get your child the best support they need sooner rather than later.
What is early intervention?
Early intervention means getting supports for your child at their very early stages of life.
What if my child is under 7 years old?
Before a child is 7, it is difficult to complete a formal assessment as the problem may not present fully until when a child is older.
The good news is any signs or issues that do present can still be addressed to help both child and parents with extra support under the NDIS Early Intervention Scheme.
What if my child is over 7 years old?
Once your child is over 7, if they have longer-term support needs you can get a formal diagnosis which you need in order to become a ‘participant’ and eligible for funding from the NDIS.
What is my first step?
Call the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) on 1800 800 110. The NDIA might tell you to call a local NDIS early childhood partner or organise for one to call you.
You might be referred to the NDIA or an early childhood partner by your GP, child and family health nurse or pediatrician, or by your child’s preschool or child care educator.
You don’t have to pay to meet with the early childhood partner, or for the information, referrals or early intervention support the early childhood partner provides.
Watch the video below for more information.
Remember, the NDIS services aim to build on your family’s strengths and help you support your child’s development and quality of life. These supports and services will be different for every child because they’re based on your child’s and your family’s individual needs and circumstances.
The original source for this information is from Raising Children, the Australian parenting website raisingchilden.net.au