TitleFactors related to early intervention Part C enrollment: A systematic review.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2017
AuthorsTwardzik, E, Cotto-Negrón, C, Macdonald, M
JournalDisabil Health J
Date Published2017 Jan 28

BACKGROUND: The first few years of life are critical for the healthy growth and development of every child. Enrolling children with disabilities or at risk of developmental delay into early intervention services is essential to successfully meet their physical, cognitive, communication, socio-emotional and adaptive needs. However, many children throughout in the United States who are eligible for public services, including early intervention services, are not accessing them. Research has yet to fully describe low enrollment rates and variability in enrollment into early intervention services.

OBJECTIVE: The objective of this review was to systematically examine current literature on enrollment of children less than three years of age into early intervention (Part C) services through the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act.

METHODS: A systematic review of relevant articles in MEDLINE, ERIC, and Google Scholar databases were conducted in March 2015. Two authors independently reviewed abstracts according to established inclusion criteria. Eligible articles were then read, confirmed, and themes were extracted.

RESULTS: Ten articles met established inclusion criteria and were reviewed. The five themes that emerged included policies for children at risk of a developmental delay, funding allocated to programs, eligibility definitions, referral into Part C programs, and structure of the state administrative system.

CONCLUSIONS: Future research should identify best practices for policy that would benefit children gaining access to services early on. It is critical that we thoughtfully address policy decisions affecting enrollment of children into early intervention programs during the next reauthorization of IDEA.

Alternate JournalDisabil Health J
PubMed ID28187953