Are you concerned that your child is missing out on valuable therapy services?
If your child was previously enrolled in a special education class or was receiving school or outpatient speech-language, occupational therapy, or physical therapy, you may be concerned about the disruption in these services due to recent school and therapy office closures.
The Pediatric Development Center is here to help fill this gap in services. We are now up and running and having great success with teletherapy services. Through teletherapy services, your child can continue to have regularly scheduled appointments that address his or her goals. Although there are certain advantages to therapy services provided in the schools and clinic locations, the recent use of teletherapy has also highlighted some advantages to this model of service delivery. During teletherapy, children are seen in the environment in which they spend most of their time – their home. Therapists are able to help children develop skills and routines in their homes, using the materials, toys, etc. that the child routinely has available. Parents are encouraged and are often needed to participate in teletherapy sessions. This involvement and interaction with their child’s therapist allows them to learn ways they can further support their child’s progress and can improve the probability that techniques used in sessions become part of home routines. Although teletherapy was not how we envisioned providing services this year, in this time of crisis and unpredictability it has been uplifting to continue to see our clients and to meet new families.
If you would like more information on teletherapy services at the Pediatric Development Center, please contact our office at 301-869-7505.
Does my health insurance cover teletherapy?
The Pediatric Development Center is a preferred provider for BCBS, UHC, and Medicaid. At this time Maryland Medicaid plans cover teletherapy services. Many BCBS and UHC plans also cover teletherapy. Parents can call to check their benefits, or can call our office at 301-869-7505 to determine coverage for teletherapy.
What do I need for my child to participate in teletherapy?
To participate in teletherapy your child needs an internet connection and a device with an integrated camera and microphone. A device like a PC, laptop, or tablet is desirable, but we have had good sessions with just a smartphone in a pinch. We just need to be able to see and hear each other.
In regards to the space needed for teletherapy, ideally a quiet space to work with a desk or table and supplies such as paper, pencil, crayons or markers, scissors, and glue. If your child is younger, then a designated place with toys to play with would also work.
Does my child need to have previously been in therapy to start teletherapy sessions at PDC?
No, however, each child will need to have a recent report with goals. If your child does not have a previous or recent report, an evaluation will need to be written by one of our therapists. This can most likely be completed over teletherapy. Please call our office and we will help you sort it out.
How often will my child receive therapy through teletherapy?
This will depend on your child’s needs and your schedule. Your child’s evaluation or progress report will provide the therapist’s recommendation, but ultimately the child’s parent determines if the child is able to participate in the recommended amount of therapy. Even once weekly therapy can have great benefits.
How long is each teletherapy session?
Sessions are 30- 60 minutes in length.
What if I do not think that my child would be able to participate in teletherapy sessions?
That is a valid concern. However, our therapists are very skilled in keeping children engaged and will work with you and your child to maximize the benefits. In some cases though it may be more beneficial for a therapist to use a coaching model to support parents in helping their child.. In this model, the child’s parent engages the child in an activity and the therapist coaches the parent during the activity. We have had several families experience real “aha moments” during sessions like this.
In which counties in Maryland does PDC offer teletherapy?
PDC offers teletherapy in all Maryland counties. This includes: Allegany, Anne Arundel, Baltimore, Baltimore City, Calvert, Caroline, Carroll, Cecil, Charles, Dorchester, Frederick, Garrett, Harford, Howard, Kent, Montgomery, Prince George’s, Queen Anne’s, Somerset, St. Mary’s, Talbot, Washington, Wicomico, and Worcester counties.
How do I get more information or initiate teletherapy services for my child.
Please call us at 301-869-7505 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Our front office team will be happy to assist you!