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Regional Center Early Intervention (Ages 0–3)

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Overview

If your child is under age three, they may qualify for early intervention and other services from your local Regional Center. Read on to learn more about eligibility, how these programs can benefit your infant or toddler, and how to handle an appeal if you're initially denied Regional Center services.

When should my child start early intervention therapies?

Because so many developmental milestones happen in the first three years of life, it’s important to start evaluations and therapies as soon as you have concerns. Regional Center helps fund early intervention therapies for children under age three who have been diagnosed with, or are at risk for, developmental delays or developmental disabilities. (You can learn more about eligibility and services in this article.) You can self-refer to Regional Center if you have concerns about your child’s development, or your child’s medical provider may make the referral.

Contents


Overview

When should my child start early intervention therapies?

Who provides early intervention services?

What is an Individualized Family Service Plan?

How do I appeal a Regional Center denial for early intervention services?

Related Parent Questions

What can I expect at my first Individualized Family Service Plan (IFSP) meeting?
At an IFSP meeting, you and the service coordinator will discuss your child’s needs and goals, specific concerns you may have about your child’s development, and what services you receive from other resources. You will also discuss Regional Center–funded services that may be appropriate.
Is my child eligible for Regional Center early intervention services?
Under California law, children are eligible for early intervention services if they have a developmental delay or are at risk of a developmental delay. Learn the specific criteria for Regional Center eligibility.
When should I start early intervention services?
There is no one-size-fits-all answer, but there are certain milestones in an infant’s first year to pay attention to when it comes to seeking out speech, physical, occupational, and behavioral therapy. Eighty percent of brain growth occurs during the first three years of life, so earlier is better.

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