Better Start for children with disabilities
As of 1 July 2011, children who are aged under 6 years and have been diagnosed with Down syndrome, cerebral palsy, Fragile X syndrome, or a moderate or greater vision or hearing impairment, including deafblindness, can be registered to access early intervention funding. If a child is diagnosed with one of the listed disabilities he/she can be registered to access early intervention funding of up to $12,000 (up to a maximum of $6,000 per financial year).
The funding can be used to pay for early intervention services provided by health professionals who are members of the Better Start Early Intervention Service Provider Panel. The professionals on the panel include speech pathologists, audiologists, occupational therapists, physiotherapists, psychologists, orthoptists and others.
In order to access this package children are required to be seen by a paediatrician, OR a relevant medical specialist, such as a neurologist, ophthalmologist, otologist or ENT, OR your GP, OR Australian Hearing.