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RULE §350.103Definitions

The following words and terms, when used in this chapter, will have the following meanings, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise.

  (1) Assessment--As defined in 34 CFR §303.321(a)(2)(ii), the ongoing procedures used by appropriate qualified personnel throughout the period of a child's eligibility for early childhood intervention (ECI) services to assess the child's individual strengths and needs and determine the appropriate services to meet those needs.

  (2) Child--An infant or toddler, from birth through 35 months, as defined in 34 CFR §303.21.

  (3) Child Find--As described in 34 CFR §§303.115, 303.302, and 303.303, activities and strategies designed to locate and identify, as early as possible, infants and toddlers with developmental delay.

  (4) Complaint--A formal written allegation submitted to the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) stating that a requirement of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) or an applicable federal or state regulation has been violated.

  (5) Comprehensive Needs Assessment--Conducted by an interdisciplinary team as defined in paragraph (25) of this section as a part of the Individualized Family Services Plan (IFSP) development process, the process for identifying a child's unique strengths and needs, and the family's resources, concerns, and priorities in order to develop an IFSP. The comprehensive assessment process gathers information across developmental domains regarding the child's abilities to participate in the everyday routines and activities of the family.

  (6) Condition with a High Probability of Resulting in Developmental Delay--A medical diagnosis known and widely accepted within the medical community to result in a developmental delay over the natural course of the diagnosis.

  (7) Consent--As defined in 34 CFR §303.7 and meeting all requirements in 34 CFR §303.420.

  (8) Contractor--A local private or public agency with proper legal status and governed by a board of directors or governing authority that accepts funds from HHSC to administer an early childhood intervention program.

  (9) Co-visits--When two or more service providers deliver different services to the child during the same period of time. Co-visits are provided when a child will receive greater benefit from services being provided at the same time, rather than individually.

  (10) Days--Calendar days, except for local education agency (LEA) services which are defined as "school days."

  (11) Developmental Delay--As defined in Texas Human Resources Code §73.001(3) and determined to be significant in compliance with the criteria and procedures in Subchapter H of this chapter (relating to Eligibility, Evaluation, and Assessment).

  (12) Developmental Screenings--General screenings provided by the early childhood intervention program to assess the child's need for further evaluation.

  (13) Early Childhood Intervention Program--In addition to the definition of early intervention service program as defined in 34 CFR §303.11, a program operated by the contractor with the express purpose of implementing a system to provide early childhood intervention services to children with developmental delays and their families.

  (14) Early Childhood Intervention Services--Individualized early childhood intervention services determined by the IFSP team to be necessary to support the family's ability to enhance their child's development. Early childhood intervention services are further defined in 34 CFR §303.13 and §303.16 and §350.1105 of this chapter (relating to Capacity to Provide Early Childhood Intervention Services).

  (15) ECI Professional--An individual employed by or under the direction of an HHSC Early Childhood Intervention Program contractor who meets the requirements of qualified personnel as defined in 34 CFR §303.13(c) and §303.31, and who is knowledgeable in child development and developmentally appropriate behavior, possesses the requisite education and experience, and demonstrates competence to provide ECI services.

  (16) EIS--Early Intervention Specialist. A credentialed professional who meets specific educational requirements established by HHSC ECI in §350.313(a) of this chapter (relating to Early Intervention Specialist (EIS)) and has specialized knowledge in early childhood cognitive, physical, communication, social-emotional, and adaptive development.

  (17) Evaluation--The procedures used by qualified personnel to determine a child's initial and continuing eligibility for early childhood intervention services that comply with the requirements described in 34 CFR §303.21 and §303.321.

  (18) FERPA--Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974, 20 USC §1232g, as amended, and implementing regulations at 34 CFR Part 99. Federal law that outlines privacy protection for parents and children enrolled in the ECI program. FERPA includes rights to confidentiality and restrictions on disclosure of personally identifiable information, and the right to inspect records.

  (19) Group Services--Early childhood intervention services provided at the same time to no more than four children and their parent or parents or routine caregivers per service provider to meet the developmental needs of the individual infant or toddler.

  (20) HHSC--Texas Health and Human Services Commission. The entity designated as the lead agency by the governor under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, Part C. HHSC has the final authority and responsibility for the administration, supervision, and monitoring of programs and activities under this system. HHSC has the final authority for the obligation and expenditure of funds and compliance with all applicable laws and rules.

  (21) HHSC ECI--The Texas Health and Human Services Commission Early Childhood Intervention Services. The state program responsible for maintaining and implementing the statewide early childhood intervention system required under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, Part C, as amended in 2004.

  (22) IFSP--Individualized Family Service Plan as defined in 34 CFR §303.20. A written plan of care for providing early childhood intervention services and other medical, health, and social services to an eligible child and the child's family when necessary to enhance the child's development.

  (23) IFSP Services--The individualized early childhood intervention services listed in the IFSP that have been determined by the IFSP team to be necessary to enhance an eligible child's development.

  (24) IFSP Team--An interdisciplinary team that meets the requirements in 34 CFR §303.24(b) and works collaboratively to develop, review, modify, and approve the IFSP. It includes the parent; the service coordinator; all ECI professionals providing services to the child, as planned on the IFSP; certified Teachers of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, as appropriate; and certified Teachers of Students with Visual Impairments, as appropriate.

  (25) Interdisciplinary Team--In addition to the definition of multidisciplinary team as defined in 34 CFR §303.24, a team that consists of at least two ECI professionals from different disciplines and the child's parent. One of the ECI professionals must be a Licensed Practitioner of the Healing Arts (LPHA). The team may include representatives of the LEA. Professionals on the team share a common perspective regarding infant and toddler development and developmental delay and work collaboratively to conduct evaluation, assessment, IFSP development, and to provide intervention.

  (26) LEA--Local educational agency as defined in 34 CFR §303.23.

  (27) LPHA--Licensed Practitioner of the Healing Arts. A licensed physician, registered nurse, licensed physical therapist, licensed occupational therapist, licensed speech language pathologist, licensed professional counselor, licensed clinical social worker, licensed psychologist, licensed dietitian, licensed audiologist, licensed physician assistant, licensed marriage and family therapist, licensed intern in speech language pathology, licensed behavior analyst, or advanced practice registered nurse who is an employee or a subcontractor of an ECI contractor. LPHA responsibilities are further described in §350.312 of this chapter (relating to Licensed Practitioner of the Healing Arts (LPHA)).

  (28) Medicaid--The medical assistance entitlement program administered by HHSC.

  (29) Native Language--As defined in 34 CFR §303.25.

    (A) When used with respect to an individual who is limited English proficient (as that term is defined in section 602(18) of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act), native language means:

      (i) the language normally used by that individual, or, in the case of a child, the language normally used by the parents of the child; and

      (ii) for evaluations and assessments conducted pursuant to 34 CFR §303.321(a)(5) and (a)(6), the language normally used by the child, if determined developmentally appropriate for the child by qualified personnel conducting the evaluation or assessment.

    (B) When used with respect to an individual who is deaf or hard of hearing, blind or visually impaired, or for an individual with no written language, "native language" means the mode of communication that is normally used by the individual (such as sign language, braille, or oral communication).

  (30) Natural Environments--As defined in 34 CFR §303.26, settings that are natural or typical for a same-aged infant or toddler without a disability, may include the home or community settings, includes the daily activities of the child and family or caregiver, and must be consistent with the provisions of 34 CFR §303.126.

  (31) Parent--As defined in 20 USC §1401 and 34 CFR §303.27.

  (32) Personally Identifiable Information--As defined in 34 CFR §99.3 and 34 CFR §303.29.

  (33) Pre-Enrollment--All family-related activities from the time the referral is received up until the time the parent signs the initial IFSP.

  (34) Primary Referral Sources--As defined in 34 CFR §303.303(c).

  (35) Public Agency--HHSC and any other state agency or political subdivision of the state that is responsible for providing early childhood intervention services to eligible children under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, Part C.

  (36) Qualifying Medical Diagnosis--A diagnosed medical condition that has a high probability of developmental delay as determined by HHSC, as described in §350.811 of this chapter (relating to Eligibility Determination Based on Medically Diagnosed Condition That Has a High Probability of Resulting in Developmental Delay).

  (37) Referral Date--The date the child's name and sufficient information to contact the family was obtained by the contractor.

  (38) Routine Caregiver--An adult who:

    (A) has written authorization from the parent to participate in early childhood intervention services with the child, even in the absence of the parent;

    (B) participates in the child's daily routines;

    (C) knows the child's likes, dislikes, strengths, and needs; and

    (D) may be the child's relative, childcare provider, or other person who regularly cares for the child.

  (39) Service Coordinator--The contractor's employee or subcontractor who:

    (A) meets all applicable requirements in Subchapter C of this chapter (relating to Staff Qualifications);

    (B) is assigned to be the single contact point for the family;

    (C) is responsible for providing case management services as described in §350.405 of this chapter (relating to Case Management Services); and

    (D) is from the profession most relevant to the child's or family's needs or is otherwise qualified to carry out all applicable responsibilities.

  (40) Surrogate Parent--A person assigned to act as a surrogate for the parent in compliance with the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, Part C and this chapter.

  (41) Telehealth services--Healthcare services, other than telemedicine medical services, delivered by a health professional licensed, certified, or otherwise entitled to practice in Texas and acting within the scope of the health professional's license, certification, or entitlement to a patient who is located at a different physical location than the health professional using telecommunications or information technology.

Source Note: The provisions of this §350.103 adopted to be effective September 1, 2011, 36 TexReg 5387; amended to be effective July 1, 2012, 37 TexReg 4621; amended to be effective September 1, 2013, 38 TexReg 5524; amended to be effective May 1, 2014, 39 TexReg 3445; amended to be effective March 7, 2015, 40 TexReg 939; amended to be effective June 30, 2019, 44 TexReg 3280; transferred effective March 1, 2021, as published in the Texas Register February 5, 2021, 46 TexReg 941; amended to be effective March 17, 2022, 47 TexReg 1277

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