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Children's Medical Services - Special services for children with special needs
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Happy baby; Text - Providing health care services that ensure our children start out healthy Four Medical Professionals; Text - Creating a place where health care professionals connect Four girls smiling; Text - Providing extraordinary care so children can lead ordinary lives
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Module Two: Lesson One

Early Steps Service Delivery System

Early Steps is one of the specialized programs offered by Children's Medical Services (CMS) in the Florida Department of Health, in accordance with the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) , Part C. It is a family-focused program that serves infants and toddlers birth to age three with a developmental delay or a condition that places them at risk for developmental delay. Sixteen contracted local Early Steps offices across the state coordinate with community agencies and other contracted providers for the delivery of needed supports and services to eligible children and their families.

In 2004, Early Steps enhanced its service delivery system to provide services and supports for infants and toddlers in places where they live, learn and play during everyday routines and activities. The enhanced Early Steps service delivery system supports families and caregivers and increases their sense of competence and confidence about their children's development and learning and about their role in this process. The following key components of service provision provide the foundation for the family-centered Early Steps system.

Key Components of Early Steps Service Delivery System

  • Recognizing and respecting the pivotal role of the family in the lives of children
  • Providing families options in service decisions
  • Bringing services into the child's life rather than fitting the child into services
  • Maximizing each child's everyday natural learning opportunities
  • Enhancing each child's development and participation in community life
  • Providing every child and family with a cohesive, consistent team for evaluation, intervention, and ongoing assessment
  • Identifying a team member, based on the child's needs and family's concerns and priorities, to serve as the primary service provider to work with the child and caregiver(s)
  • Providing an integrated and collaborative delivery of services

 

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