Referral/Eligibility Determination

How does a family become involved in Early Intervention?

Primary referral sources may refer any child suspected of having a developmental delay.

  • Primary referral sources = mom, dad, pediatrician, child care worker, nurse, grandparent, etc.

But how do I know if my child needs to be referred? 

Look at this developmental checklist.

A referral may be made by

  • calling the Child Find number (1-800-543-3098). Spanish-speaking families may call (1-866-450-2838). Please have child/parent information (child’s name, date of birth, address, phone numbers, etc.) available.
  • faxing a completed Child Find form to 334-293-7393.

How is eligibility for Early Intervention determined?

Every child/family is assigned a service coordinator.  A service coordinator’s job is to help the family understand Early Intervention.  She will assure the family’s rights are protected. Forty-five calendar days from the date of referral, the evaluation process must be completed, unless the family is unable to meet this timeline.

The evaluation may take place in your home/daycare or it may take place in an office setting.

The evaluation/assessment process consists of:

  • At least two formal procedures 
  • Evaluation of all five developmental areas 
  • Determination of vision/hearing/overall health status 
  • Involvement of at least two different disciplines
  • In the case of a diagnosis, a written report from the physician
  • Personal interview for the VOLUNTARY family assessment
  • Informed clinical opinion
  • Adherence to nondiscriminatory procedures 

At the end of this process, an evaluation report(s) will be completed.  

To be eligible for services, the child must have at least a 25 percent delay in one developmental area or have a diagnosed condition that will result in developmental delay.

Possible evaluation tools (formal procedures) include:

  • Battelle Developmental Inventory-3
  • DAYC-Developmental Assessment of Young Children
  • ELAP-Early Learning Accomplishment Profile
  • IDA-Infant Developmental Assessment
  • PLS-5-Preschool Language Scales
  • EIDP-Early Intervention Developmental Profile
  • Rossetti Infant-Toddler Language Scales

Follow-up on a referral made by someone other than the parents:

  • EI rules and regulations require written parental consent.
  • You may have the parents sign this consent form and send it along with the referral information.  Please remember that the family's consent is voluntary and may be revoked at any time. With a signed consent on record, staff answering the Child Find referral line can respond to questions from the referral source regarding the status of the referral.