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Everything You Need to Know About the BabyNet Referral Process

May 27, 2022

BabyNet is South Carolina’s interagency early intervention system for children under 3 years old who may have developmental conditions or delays. They evaluate a child’s developmental progress at no cost to the family. If a child qualifies for early intervention, BabyNet provides the children and their families with the services, resources, and information they need to give the child the best possible care.

While BabyNet is a great service, it can be overwhelming for anyone who is trying to get into the system for the first time. This blog is meant to provide you with all of the information you need to get started. 

How Do You Refer A Child to BabyNet?

The referral process involves applying for BabyNet services and seeing if your child is eligible for the program.

To get a referral, you can fill out the BabyNet Referral Form online. This BabyNet form only asks for:

  • Your contact information
  • The reason for the referral
  • Date of birth of the child
  • Consent to get information about your child

If you need help with the process, you can talk to your child’s pediatrician or contact an Early Intervention provider like About Play. They can make the process a little bit easier. 

You may also submit a referral via phone by calling the BabyNet Central Referral Team at 1-866-512-8881.

Who Can Refer A Child To BabyNet?

While parents can refer their child to BabyNet, they aren’t the only ones who can. The referral can also be made by

  • Caregivers
  • Daycare providers
  • Doctors
  • Friends

Once the referral is made, the family is contacted by a BabyNet Service Coordinator who will explain the system and determine if the child is eligible for services. If your child is found eligible, you will then select an early intervention provider in your area. 

BabyNet Eligibility Criteria

There are a few eligibility criteria that your child needs to meet for them to have access to BabyNet and all the services that come with it. The first criteria is that they must be under 3 years old. 

They must also have a developmental delay of 40% in one area of development or a delay of 25% in two areas of development. These delays are measured with specific diagnostic instruments and procedures to ensure accuracy. The areas of development that are analyzed include:

  • Cognitive
  • Physical
  • Communication
  • Social and/or emotional
  • Adaptive 

If the child does not have a developmental delay as described above, then the child must have been diagnosed with a physical or mental condition that is verified by a physician and that has a high probability of leading to a developmental delay. Some of the most common conditions that meet the criteria include:

  • Chromosomal abnormalities
  • Congenital disorders and infections
  • Sensory impairments
  • Inborn errors of metabolism
  • Nervous system development disturbance
  • Severe attachment disorders
  • Prematurity complications
  • Disorders secondary to exposure to toxic substances such as fetal alcohol syndrome

What Happens After The BabyNet Referral?

There are several things that happen after you refer your child to BabyNet. Once the referral is in, BabyNet will come out and do an assessment of the child and record any developmental delays. If a doctor has already made a diagnosis, this assessment may not need to be done.

Next, BabyNet will determine if the child is eligible and then you’ll decide which early intervention provider  you think will be best for your child. BabyNet will give you a booklet of different early intervention providers to choose from.

If you choose AboutPlay, you can call BabyNet and let them know what your decision is. BabyNet will then contact us and we will choose an early interventionist (EI) from our team and they will contact you. This can take up to a week to complete.

From there, your EI will schedule a home visit where a more in depth assessment will be completed. The second home visit will be to develop the Individualized Family Service Plan (IFSP).  The IFSP team can talk about your family’s resources, priorities, and concerns as well as the developmental goals for your child and what services will be most helpful to them. 

As your child takes part in early intervention with their EI,  they will then work with you on  how to best support your child and how to help them practice developmental skills between early intervention visits.

Referring your child to BabyNet is just the first step in helping them get the skills and resources they need to learn and grow. If you have questions about BabyNet or how we work with them to provide early intervention services, don't hesitate to contact us online.

 

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