cerebral palsy program
specialty care for children with cerebral palsy
At Dayton Children’s, we know that children with cerebral palsy do best when they receive well-coordinated care from a team of specialists. About 300 children rely on our team for care, and we are committed to responding quickly to their needs. Teamwork and communication make a difference, and we pride ourselves on “getting things done” for the families we serve.
Many of our families receive benefits from the State of Ohio’s Children with Medical Handicaps Program (BCMH). We follow BCMH care guidelines, which means children receive consistent, well-coordinated care that is covered by their BCMH insurance.
Most of our patients have cerebral palsy, but we also care for children who have problems with motor skills that are not related to cerebral palsy.
your child’s first appointment
Children are typically about a year old when they come to our clinic for the first time. Your child’s first appointment in the cerebral palsy clinic will last two to three hours, so be sure to bring diapers, formula, snacks and favorite toys. Also, bring along a list of questions you would like to ask our team.
The first visit will include a comprehensive evaluation. At the end of this appointment, you will receive written notes about your visit and our initial recommendations. Later, after our team has an opportunity to talk more about your child’s needs, you will receive a comprehensive, written treatment plan.
Our care coordinator is available by phone to answer your questions and provide you with the support you need.
We will also talk with you about applying for coverage through the State of Ohio’s Children with Medical Handicaps Program (BCMH). This program serves children with special health care needs by providing care coordination and supplementary insurance coverage.
Our team will coordinate your child’s care and make adjustments to the treatment plan as needed. When patients turn 21, we help them transition to an adult care provider.
services we offer
Some children with cerebral palsy have complex medical needs, while others do not. Our clinic coordinator will make sure your child receives the services he or she needs in a well-coordinated way.
After completing a comprehensive evaluation, our team will establish a personalized treatment plan for your child. Our comprehensive services include:
- Physical and occupational therapy
- Therapy for speech, language and feeding concerns
- Equipment evaluations, for children who use assistive devices such as a wheelchair, walker or braces
- Spasticity management
- Nutritional care
- Referrals to specialists at Dayton Children’s and other providers
- Social work services, to help families access community resources
- Documentation and support to ensure children receive the services they need at school
- Assistance with transitioning to adult care providers
Follow-up visits may take place every three to six months during your child’s first two years of life. As your child grows, we will space these out so that by the age of five your child is coming to see us every year or so. We will schedule follow-up appointments at the end of each visit.
These visits are a chance for us to see how your child is responding to the treatment plan and recommend additional therapy or testing if needed. We will tailor follow-up visits based on your child’s needs. These appointments usually take about three hours. We will try to schedule any medical tests or imaging procedures (such as X-rays) on the same day.
If your child uses assistive equipment such as a walker or braces, please be sure to bring them to your child’s follow-up appointment so that our physical therapist can make sure everything is working properly and is sized correctly.