Early Intervention + Outpatient Therapy; It's an "and" not an "or"

Do I have to choose between early intervention and outpatient pediatric therapy services for my child?

A question that we frequently hear within the community and upon first meeting a family over the phone when scheduling their child's initial evaluation appointment. A resounding "absolutely not!" The state's early intervention program and pediatric outpatient therapy work collaboratively to help each child and his or her family to reach their goals. 

What is the difference between early intervention and outpatient therapy?

  • Birth to 3 Program: Therapy sessions are individualized based on current family concerns.  The focus is on teaching the parent/caregiver strategies to help their child to achieve outcomes during their family and child’s daily routines. Frequency of sessions may change based on the amount of support that family feels they need and may range between 1x/month to 1x/week.  Parents or caregivers are present and participate during the session.
  • Outpatient Therapy:  Therapy sessions are based on the child’s functional goals identified on their plan of care along with the frequency of treatment and therapeutic strategies recommended to meet the goals identified.  Therapists work one on one with children on activities.  Therapists utilize equipment and therapy techniques in the clinic setting to address areas of development impacting progress toward the goals identified. Parent are provided activities and strategies for home program to work to carry over progress toward goals in the child’s environment.  Parents and family members are included in the therapy sessions whenever they choose.

What is the ELIGIBILITY for therapy?

  • Birth to 3 Program:  Children are eligible for the Birth to 3 Program if they have 25% or more delay in one of the following developmental areas:  cognitive development, physical/motor development, speech and language development, social and emotional development, and adaptive development (eat/dress/care for daily needs).  
  • Outpatient Therapy :  Eligibility for outpatient therapy is based on children’s needs as determined from evaluation which identify medical impairments with functional delays and/or limitations in the ability for the child to interact with their environment.  Children may or may not have been diagnosed with a specific condition.

We have expert occupational, physical, and speech therapists on staff, in addition to a registered dietitian and massage therapist. For more information regarding out patient therapy services or for a complete OT, PT, Speech, or Nutrition evaluation, please call our clinic directly or send us a question: (541) 716-1316 or info@gorgeplayworks.com

Sarah McDonnell