Families often have many questions about Boost Collaborative and early intervention. Finding the right program and services for a child is a rewarding experience, but at times can be a bit overwhelming. The early intervention team is here to help parents every step of the way. Here are some frequently asked questions Boost Collaborative receives that may help you get started:
Q: What is IDEA Part C?
A: I.D.E.A, short for “Individuals with Disabilities Education Act”, is a federal law created to encourage states to develop services for children and youth with disabilities. Part C of the act guides states in providing services to infants and toddlers with developmental delays or disabilities. Washington State Department of Children, Youth and Families, Early Supports for Infants and Toddlers (DCYF/ESIT) is the state agency responsible for ensuring our state’s compliance with Part C of this federal law.
Q: What are the costs associated with this program?
A: Screenings, evaluation and assessment are services provided at no cost to families. Boost Collaborative receives funds from multiple sources (e.g. Whitman County Developmental Services, Washington State Department of Children, Youth and Families/Early Support for Infants and Toddlers (ESIT), United Way, and private donors) to pay for services and supports not covered by medical insurance. We access insurance to cover the cost of some of our services. Depending on your child's medical insurance, there may be copays and deductibles associated with these services. A sliding scale option is available for qualifying families. “Our goal is to make sure all families and children can access needed services and supports, regardless of ability to pay.
Q: What if I decide that I no longer want to participate in the program, or I no longer want a particular service listed in my child’s plan?
A: Our program is completely voluntary. Parents have the right to decline services at any time.
Q: I work fulltime and my child attends fulltime childcare. How can I get services without missing too much work?
A: Our team provides most services in ‘natural environments’, that is, the environments where children typically spend their time. We provide services in multiple childcare and community settings, through coordination with parents and their child’s care provider.
Q: I don’t live in Garfield or Whitman County, WA or I will be moving to a new county or state in the near future. How can I find a program like Boost Collaborative in my community?
A: Every state has IDEA part C, early intervention providers. In Washington DCYF/ESIT contracts with agencies throughout the state to provide early intervention services. Boost Collaborative is one of many contract agencies but the only contract provider in Garfield and Whitman County.
Q: I keep hearing that playing with my child is important. Where can I find more ideas for helping my child learn through play?
A: Play is a child’s work. There are many wonderful resources to support play with young children. The Boston Children’s Museum developed this website to underscore that play is a vital activity that children use to learn about and interact with their world, and gain the mental, physical, and social skills necessary to succeed in their adult lives. For activities your can do with your children according to age, you can also visit the following web sources: The Boston Children's Museum-The Power of Play, Healthy Children, or Zero to Three.
Q: My child is 18 months old and not talking yet, should I be concerned?
A: Some children take longer to talk than others, especially if they have older siblings that like to talk for them or are learning more than one language. By 18 months your child should have 5-10 words they use, understand more than 50 words, and imitate simple words and actions. By 2 years old, a child should have more than 50 words, be putting two words together, and follow two step directions. Speech/Language services are designed to give parents the tools they need to support their child’s communication during the day. Give us a call and we will see how we can help!
Q: How long after I make a call to Boost Collaborative before I can expect to get help for my child?
A: Because brain development is so critical in the first three years of life, federal law requires that our team complete evaluation, assessment, and the Individualized Family Service Plan (IFSP) within 45 calendar days of referral, and begin services within 30 days of parent consent for services, given at the IFSP meeting. Parents can assist us in meeting these important timelines by partnering with us to schedule appointments and meetings as soon as possible.
Q: I or my child's primary medical provider have concerns about my child’s development. What do I do now?
A: A doctor's referral is not necessary before contacting us; anyone with a concern about a child’s development can request developmental screenings and/ or evaluations from our program. However, we encourage parents to discuss concerns with their child's doctor.
More questions? Contact Boost Collaborative at 509-332-4420