In our first year implementing a new developmental screening program, we found that 20 percent of children screened had possible delays in their development. Developmental screening is an important first step in diagnosing children who might have developmental delays or autism, yet many young children fail to receive it.
“About one in five children face developmental disabilities or disabling behavioral problems before age 18, but only half are identified before age five,” said Sean Casey, Executive Director of First 5 Contra Costa. “Developmental screening increases the chances of identifying children with developmental concerns when they are very young – the time when intervention is most effective and least expensive.” Continue reading
Jessica Bucho’s three-year-old son Connor suddenly stopped talking following two surgeries to correct the effects of a hernia. After six weeks, staff at the Delta First 5 Center intervened. They shared their concerns with Jessica and asked to conduct a developmental screening on Connor.
Jessica had been going to the Delta First 5 Center with her older daughter and Connor since she moved to Brentwood three years ago. She trusted the staff there and agreed to have the screen.
Using the widely tested Ages and Stages Questionnaire (ASQ) to screen Connor, the Delta First 5 Center staff asked Jessica a series of questions tied to developmental milestones. Routine developmental screening can assess if a child’s development is on track, identify concerns as early as possible, and provide information for parents about what to expect as children develop and grow.