How do I start the process?
If your child is under the age of three and you have concerns about his or her development, call the county in which you reside at the number below:
- Bedford County: 814-623-5166
- Cambria County: 814-535-8531
- Somerset County: 814-443-4891
If your child is over three years old, please contact your Intermediate Unit at 1-800-228-7900.
What is Early Intervention?
Early Intervention is an in-home program which provides services to children who have been found eligible based on an evaluation completed by the county. Services could include physical therapy, speech therapy, occupational therapy, nutrition instruction, social work, and special instruction provided by a qualified teacher.
Who is eligible?
Beginnings provides services in Bedford, Cambria, and Somerset counties to children who qualify based on the county evaluation. This is a FREE service, regardless if your child has insurance or not.
Where do visits take place and how often?
It is best for the child to receive services in his or her natural environment such as the home, grandparents’ house, daycare, etc. For some, services take place in the home or daycare. Services can be managed to follow the child where situations are challenging – if that’s in a grocery store or playground, services can be altered to meet the needs of the child and family throughout the course of the program.
The family and county will determine together how often and how long visits will take place based on the needs of the family and child.
Do I have to have a doctor referral in order to have my child evaluated for Early Intervention Services?
Any parent or guardian can call the county directly in order to schedule a referral. The process DOES NOT have to begin with a physician referral. If your child qualifies for physical, occupational, or nutrition services, our agency will contact your child’s pediatrician to obtain an order to provide treatment. Speech therapy, social work, and special instruction do not require a physician order to provide therapy.