Early Intervention - Royal Institute for Deaf & Blind Children

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Early Intervention

The diagnosis of a baby or young child with hearing loss is often unexpected. It can be a confusing time for you and your family, but there is help at hand.

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Giving your child the best start in life

Our early intervention services support you and your family from the time your child is first diagnosed. Learning that your child is deaf or hard of hearing can be an emotional time for you and your family, and we are by your side to help you navigate the journey.

Our evidence-based and goal-focused programs address the listening, language, communication and social skills children need to flourish in their early years. We help you and your child develop listening and communication skills through play, integrating learning into your daily routine to ensure you and your family can support your child’s development at home.

Each year, we support thousands of children who have a range of different types and degrees of hearing loss, from unilateral hearing loss (UHL) and mild hearing loss to profound hearing loss. We also support children with additional disabilities, including those who are deafblind.

Supporting your unique journey

Your child is unique, and so are their development and learning needs. Because hearing loss can create specific challenges, your child’s personal early intervention program is designed to address these, providing the unique mix of services and support you, your family and your child need to flourish.

We work through each stage of your child’s development including listening, language, cognitive, gross and fine motor skills and play development to help them reach developmental goals in their early years, build independence and participate fully in all aspects of daily life.

Your RIDBC early intervention program is completed tailored to your child and your family. It is designed to educate and support all your family members, developing your ability and confidence to support your child at home and in the community.

Building a team around your child

An expert consultant will be assigned to your family as your key worker. The role of the key worker is to provide intervention and individualised service planning, helping your child to have a range of experiences in their life. They also help to coordinate your child’s services and supports. To achieve the best outcomes, these services shouldn’t work in isolation, so we will work closely with you, your health professionals and community support services to ensure you have an integrated team in your corner.

Your key worker will help you access and integrate the services and supports to ensure your child has the best start in life. RIDBC can help support your individualised plan through the provision of:

Audiology services, including cochlear implant assessment and ongoing management
Speech pathology
Playgroup, preschool and childcare
A teacher of the deaf
Australian Sign Language (Auslan) support
Occupational therapy
Physiotherapy
Assistive technologies
Medical specialists
Psychologists and counselling
Parent information and networking.