South Health District

Babies Can’t Wait

BCW_2_color_final1Babies Can’t Wait (BCW) is Georgia’s early intervention program which serves children who have significant developmental delays or children who may be at risk for delays due to a diagnosed medical condition. The program provides services to children, ages birth to 3, and their families.

The program was created under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. BCW provides evaluation to determine eligibility and service coordination at no charge to families. Some additional services may require payment; however, BCW has financial resources to assist, if necessary. Eligibility for the program is not based on income.

Upon receipt of referral, contact is made with the family to arrange for the evaluation to determine eligibility. The child is evaluated by the Babies Can’t Wait multi-disciplinary team. If the child is determined ineligible, appropriate referrals are made to other community programs. If the child is determined eligible, an ongoing family service coordinator is chosen, and an Individualized Family Service Plan (IFSP) is developed. This plan is used to identify goals, strategies, and services that will enhance and promote the child’s development.

The IFSP is reviewed every six months to evaluate progress or whenever a parent requests a change. It is re-written annually with the family, providers, and other individuals specified by the family. Services are based upon the child’s individual developmental needs and are coordinated among providers from both the public and private sectors. Services may include assistive technology, audiology, vision, family training and counseling, speech therapy, occupational therapy, and physical therapy.

When a child reaches age 3, he/she is no longer eligible for services through BCW. Prior to the child’s third birthday, the family’s service coordinator will discuss transition options with the family. The family then chooses what option best meets their needs.

Development Checklist (PDF)
This checklist gives signs and symptoms to look for at each stage of a baby’s early growth and development.

BCW Contact Information:
Judy Threlkeld
Local – 229-245-6565
Long Distance – 800-247-6538
State of Georgia BCW – http://dph.georgia.gov/Babies-Cant-Wait