Following is an update from Dr. Daniel Stephens of NYC DOHMH regarding the provision of face-to-face or in person services.
While Early Intervention is considered an essential service under the Governor’s executive order, social distancing must still be practiced, which is best facilitated with the use of teletherapy. This mandate will serve to protect Early Intervention therapists, families and the children whom we serve.
Currently, COVID-19 is widespread and increasing in New York City, and according to the Centers for Disease Control and the DOHMH, COVID-19 can spread among people who are in close contact. Furthermore, people with regular close contact with someone who has or could have COVID-19 are at higher risk. This includes persons who live in the same home or who may be entering the home routinely like Early Intervention service providers. https://www1.nyc.gov/assets/doh/downloads/pdf/imm/coronavirus-factsheet.pdf
Therefore, in order to limit community transmission of COVID-19 and effectively implement the Governor’s “New York State on Pause” executive order, as of Friday, March 27, 2020, Early Intervention services can ONLY be provided using teletherapy at this time.
Please note that Early Intervention services can still be provided in childcare settings.