The Professional Center for Child Development (PCCD) is now offering telehealth, tele-Early Intervention, and tele-education for children with developmental concerns and their families in response to the COVID-19 crisis.
PCCD, which provides Early Intervention services in Lawrence, Andover, North Andover and Methuen, acted in the early days of the COVID-19 crisis to suspend in-person programming and develop technology-enabled services. Even during a world health crisis, consistent education and therapy services are critical to the health and development of children who may be at risk for developmental delays.
“For children that attend our programs, consistency and repetition is key to their learning. A substantial break in their services can have a negative impact on their learning,” says Chris Hunt, PCCD executive director. “Many of our existing families have transitioned to this new platform.”
PCCD is also welcoming new children and families who need support and services from its expert teachers and therapists.
“We continue to accept new referrals and complete evaluations virtually,” Cheryl Bruk, Director of Early Intervention at PCCD shared.
Eighteen-month-old Lilah is among the children benefiting from these new virtual visits, which have allowed her to continue receiving speech and occupational therapy during social distancing.
“Being able to continue these services at home during these unique and challenging times has been an invaluable resource that we couldn’t imagine not having,” said Lilah’s mother, Brianna Stetson of North Andover.
During these online virtual visits, PCCD’s teachers and therapists provide services the children would typically receive in the home or school setting, share resources and activities to complete at home, and lend invaluable support and empowerment to families and caregivers.
“We wouldn’t even know where to begin or how to navigate this new normal without the support and expertise from our service team,” Stetson said. “These services are invaluable not just for our children, but us as parents.”
“Interventions provided at the earliest stages of life has the greatest impact over a child’s lifespan,” Hunt says. “Thanks to our new virtual services, we can continue to provide critical intervention services during the pandemic.”