What is Early Intervention?

Early Intervention is a statewide program that provides a variety of services to infants and toddlers with disabilities and their families. In New York State, the Department of Health is the lead state agency responsible for the Early Intervention Program. To be eligible for services, children must be under 3 years of age and have a confirmed disability or an established developmental delay, as defined by the State, in one or more of the following areas of development: physical, cognitive, communication, social-emotional, and/or adaptive.


Developmental Disabilities Institute is approved by the New York State Department of Health and is under contract with Nassau & Suffolk counties to complete evaluations and provide services. 


What services are available through Early Intervention?

Early intervention services are most effective when they take place in the child’s natural environment and when there is active family involvement. Services include: special instruction, speech therapy, occupational therapy, physical therapy and family education and support. Services may be provided in the child's home, day care center, library and early childhood programs and centers. DDI currently has two early intervention programs, Starting Early and  Young Autism Program. Center based programs are available at Huntington, Ronkonkoma and Medford.


How do I refer my child to the Early Intervention Program? 

Your first step into the Early Intervention Program begins with a referral to your county's Early Intervention Official (EIO). A referral can be made by the child's parents or pediatrician.

  • Nassau County Department of Health - (516) 227-8661
  • Suffolk County Department of Health - (631) 853-3100 


If you require further information and assistance in making a referral, DDI can guide you through the referral process.

  • Huntington: Loyda Mastrelli, Evaluation Coordinator, (631) 266-4413 Email Loyda
  • Ronkonkoma & Medford: Jeanne Rubbo, Evaluation Coordinator, (631) 580-4024 Email Jeanne

Services for all eligible children are provided at no cost to families. Funding for the early Intervention program is through NYSDOHNassau and Suffolk DOH.