Kids Place Frequently Asked Questions
I feel my child needs therapy services, how can I schedule an evaluation?
Direct access to therapy services is available in the state of Arizona. A prescription is not necessary, unless you plan to use your insurance. Some insurance companies will require prescriptions, authorizations, and/or pre-certifications. Please call us at (623) 242-6908 if you believe your child may need therapy. Our front office can better assist you based on your specific insurance requirements. You can also contact your child’s pediatrician and ask for a referral to Kids Place.
What happens prior to my first appointment?
Once a referral is received from a doctor’s office, or a patient calls us directly, our front office will schedule your initial evaluation. Our front office will then call your insurance company to verify benefits. If prior authorization is needed from the insurance company, our front office will work with the doctor’s office to receive all of the appropriate paperwork. When insurance benefits are verified, as a courtesy, AZOPT will call to inform you of your benefits.
What can I expect at our first appointment?
At the beginning of your first appointment (evaluation), you will be expected to complete our intake forms. Upon completion, the evaluating therapist will bring your child and you into the treatment area for the assessment. You will be asked questions about your child and your medical history as well as to describe any concerns regarding your child. Following, an assessment will be performed with your child. This assessment is individualized and based on the tolerance of your child. Each therapist will spend time getting to know your child through “play” and bring in evaluative activities as your child is comfortable. At the end of the evaluation, each therapist will discuss and recommend the need and frequency of ongoing therapy with the caregiver. Home activities are also prescribed at the evaluation to immediately begin working with the child on specific skills.
How long is each appointment?
30 – 60 minutes with the average session approximately 45 minutes.
What should my child wear to appointments?
Children should wear comfortable clothes to therapy. If your child needs ongoing therapy, their therapist may suggest clothing for optimal performance.
What if my child needs other therapy services or referrals?
We are very thorough with referrals to other disciplines if further needs are warranted. For example, if a child is referred to Kids Place for physical therapy, but upon evaluation, we feel the child may also benefit from occupational therapy, we will work with your doctor to receive the proper referral so the child can receive the best and most optimal care. Furthermore, our therapists have a network of specialists we can recommend if we feel your child may benefit from additional testing.
Can I bring my other children to the evaluation?
If at all possible, it would be wonderful for you to not bring other children during the evaluation. Our facility looks like a huge playground for kids, but one that needs constant supervision. It is difficult for siblings to understand why they are not able to play on and with all the therapy equipment. Our attention and yours is best served focusing on your child in need of the evaluation.
If my child needs multiple therapies, how will my schedule work, and will the therapists work together?
We provide services for many children that have multiple therapies, and our therapy staff is very devoted to discussing ways that we can all compliment activities for a well-rounded treatment session. Some of our kids will receive back to back therapy with two or three disciplines. Some will co-treat therapy of two disciplines. Many of this depends on your child’s individual tolerance and need. However, some insurance companies dictate if they reimburse for therapies on the same day. Our front office will coordinate with your insurance company to determine whether back to back therapies are an option.
Do you communicate with my doctor?
Your doctor will receive a copy of all evaluations and progress reports. Progress reports are completed quarterly. If necessary, our therapists will call and discuss specific information with your doctor. It is very important for all healthcare providers of children to be in constant communication to allow for optimal interventions.
Do you want the parents to be a part of the therapy session?
We love to have the parents as part of the therapy session and encourage it as much as possible. However, there are exceptions to this rule. If your child has difficulty working during the therapy session when their parent is within reach, we may ask the parent to sit in the waiting room. Another exception is when siblings are present during the session. In this instance, we may ask the parent to stay in the waiting room with the siblings to minimize any distractions. However, if your child is able to perform their best with a parent as part of the session, we promote parent participation. It is important for parents to watch and learn the activities so they can continue working on these skills at home.
How important is the home program?
The home program is critical to the progress of the child with any of the therapies. Typically, we will see the child 1 or 2 times each week. Although progress is made in each session, it pales in comparison to the progress that can be made with home program follow-through. Each session, parents are given activities to perform with their child until the following treatment session. Children who complete their home programs show significant gains each week.
How important is it for my child to attend therapy weekly?
Each session, the therapist reassesses the child to determine the appropriate plan of care. If weekly therapy is not necessary, the therapist will suggest reducing the number of sessions. However, if the therapist recommends weekly therapy, it is extremely critical for the child to attend each session. Children who attend each session warm up to the routine of therapy. However, when a child misses a session, sometimes it will take weeks to regain the two week loss of time. The frequency of therapy is recommended by the therapist based on the individual needs of a child to promote optimal changes in your child’s development.
At what point will my child complete therapy?
Your child’s therapy needs may change during the course of treatment. The following conditions may result in your therapist recommending discharge from Kids Place:
Plateau in function
The therapists at Kids Place are dedicated to improving the functional skills for the kids we treat. We write goals each quarter based on areas of need and concerns that the parents have. After each quarter we discuss progress towards goals and continue to work towards goals not met, or write new goals based on progress. If your child has not met goals in two quarters, your child will be discharged. As therapists we are committed to creating an environment that allows each child to grow. If a child has reached a plateau and has not made progress in 6 months, it is time for a change.
Meeting all goals
There are occasions when a child meets all of their established goals. When this happens, new goals may be written, or the child may be discharged from therapy. When the therapist does not have functional and objective goals to write the child will be discharged.