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      RS 28:461     





§461.  Findings; policy

A.  The Louisiana Legislature hereby finds that there is an urgent and substantial need in this state for all of the following:

(1)  Enhancements in the development of infants and toddlers with disabilities in order to minimize their potential for developmental delay.

(2)  Greater recognition of the significant brain development that occurs during a child's first three years of life.

(3)  A reduction to the educational costs to our society, including costs borne by Louisiana's schools, through minimizing the need for special education and related services after infants and toddlers with disabilities reach school age.

(4)  Maximization of the potential for individuals with disabilities to live independently in the community.

(5)  Enhancement of families' capacity to meet the special needs of their infants and toddlers with disabilities.

(6)  Enhancement of the capacity of state and local agencies and service providers to identify, evaluate, and meet the needs of all children; particularly minority, low-income, inner-city, and rural children, and infants and toddlers in foster care.

B.  In consideration of the needs described in this Section, it is therefore the policy of Louisiana:

(1)  To develop and implement a statewide, comprehensive, coordinated, multidisciplinary interagency system that provides early intervention services for infants and toddlers with disabilities and their families.

(2)  To establish a state system of payments that provides for the collection, facilitation, and coordination of payment for early intervention services from federal, state, local, and private sources, including public and private insurance coverage and cost sharing with those families who qualify.

(3)  To enhance Louisiana's capacity to provide quality early intervention services and to expand and improve existing early intervention services currently being provided to infants and toddlers with disabilities and their families.

(4)  To encourage Louisiana to expand opportunities for children under three years of age who would be at risk of having substantial developmental delay if they did not receive early intervention services.

Acts 2013, No. 417, §1, eff. June 21, 2013.

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