April 10, 2008 Illinois Interagency Council on Early Intervention Meeting Report

Illinois Interagency Council on Early Intervention

Thursday, April 10, 2008
10:00 a.m. until 1:00 p.m.
UCP of Greater Chicago/Infinitec Southwest ~ Tinley Park, Illinois


Note: X = IICEI Members In Attendance.

  • Diane Blythe, parent, Crystal Lake X
  • Gerri Clark, Division of Specialized Care for Children X
  • Sheena Coleman, parent, Naperville 
  • Bob Cammarata, ICG Health Care Services X
  • Andria Goss, IL Department of Children and Family Services X
  • Janet Gully, DHS, Bureau of Early Intervention X
  • Representative Julie Hamos 
  • Beatrice Nichols, IICEI Chairperson, Head Start X
  • Mary Peterson, DFPR, Division of Insurance X
  • Karrie Potter, parent, Neoga X
  • Deanna Pratscher, parent, Thonton X
  • Dorelia Rivera-Martinez, Melrose Park X
  • Pam Reising-Rechner for Kay Henderson, IL State Board of Education X
  • David Rubovits, PhD, Jewish Child and Family Services 
  • Sandy Ryan, IL Council on Developmental Disabilities X
  • Linda Saterfield, DHS, Bureau of Child Care and Development 
  • Deborah Saunders, IL Dept of Healthcare and Family Services 
  • Kathy Schrock, Easter Seals DuPage and Fox Valley X
  • Connie Sims, DHS, Division of Developmental Disabilities 
  • Joyce Smith, Lessie Bates Davis Neighborhood House X
  • Myrtis Sullivan, DHS, Division of Community Health and Prevention 
  • Gail Tanner, AuD, IL Department of Public Health 
  • Therese Wehman, PhD, Elmhurst College X
  • Constance Williams, PhD, DHS, Division of Mental Health X

Contents of Council Packet

  • Agenda
  • Lead Agency Report - April 10, 2008
  • Draft Council Report for January 10, 2008
  • Work Group Reports - Finance, Transition, Service Delay
  • Annual Performance Report
  • 89 IL Admin Code 500 - Early Intervention Rule
  • Analysis of Service Delays - February 2008
  • Birth Trend Charts
  • SFY07 Early Intervention Program Child Outcome Progress Data

I. Call to Order

Beatrice, Nichols, IICEI Chairperson, called the meeting to order at 10:00 a.m.

II. Introduction of Council Members

Council members introduced themselves. A motion was made by Bob Cammarata and seconded by Kathy Schrock to approve the minutes to the January 10 Council meeting as written. The motion passed.

III. Work Group Reports

Finance Work Group - Kathy Schrock provided a report from the Finance Work Group, which has met one time. The group received a presentation on program finances. It was clarified that discussions did not include changing the definition of eligibility. Areas for the group to explore include legislation that mandates insurance coverage and consideration of "outliers" which may represent potential excessive utilization or underutilization of the system. Information on these areas will be presented at the next work group meeting for more in-depth discussion.

Service Delay Work Group - Bob Cammarata provided a report from the Service Delay Work Group, which has met two times. Two main areas of focus include increasing the number of services provided to children in a natural environment and decreasing the number of children who experience service delays. Specific points of discussion were provided in the work group meeting notes, which can be found in the Council packet.

Transition Work Group - Deanna Pratscher provided a report from the Transition Work Group, which has met two times. The work group reviewed statistics, identified issues and brainstormed strategies in areas identified in the April 7 meeting notes (distributed at the Council meeting): family delay, late referral, small/rural, and economic/minority-Hispanic.

IV. Lead Agency Report

Ted Burke provided an update on interpreter testing and training, which started in February. As of March 1, interpreters/translators new to the system must complete the testing and training prior to applying for enrollment. Currently enrolled interpreter/translators have until September 1 to come into compliance. Initial issues with proctoring the exam have been corrected, with future plans to use a computer-based approach to ensure consistency. Those who have taken the test are doing well on the oral exam, with fewer passing the written exam.

Janet Gully reported that most Early Intervention providers have come into compliance with providing national provider identification (NPI) numbers. As of March 1, these numbers are needed for a claim to be processed.

Graze Ortiz, CFC 9 program manager, provide a report on the work of the Minority Outreach Strategies Work Group, which she chairs. The group has looked at the declining number of African American children in Chicago who are enrolled in the program and the under-representation among the Asian populations. The group will continue to look at data. Strategies to address issues regarding providing services in a family's primary language include recruitment of interpreters and posting of documents and brochures that have been translated into various languages onto the EI Clearinghouse web site.

The Council discussed issues around serving minorities and provider selection of families to serve, including factors that influence that decision (i.e., parking and transportation costs, unsafe neighborhoods, etc.). Another issue is evaluators who do choose not to provide ongoing services to families. The Council discussed families waiting for services and ways to influence providers to meet the demand fairly. The state's and CFCs' capacity to hold providers accountable and responsible were considered. The process of placement of services for a child in a non-natural environment and the requirement for a plan to transition to a natural environment, when needed, were clarified. The use of natural environments as a performance indicator and its impact on CFCs (penalty adjustments) and waiting lists were discussed.

Bob Cammarata reminded the Council that the Service Delay Work Group will discuss these issues further. Provider shortages and strategies to address them were briefly discussed. This is another area for that the Service Delay Work Group will be working on.

Janet Gully reported that the Annual Performance Report (APR) was provided with the Council packet and has been posted on the DHS web site. She suggested that the Service Delay Work Group refer to the natural environment indicator in the report. Council members were encouraged to review the report. As part of the APR process, areas of noncompliance has been identified and CFCs have developed plans to address these areas and document correction within one year. Plans were received by April 1 and reports on areas of noncompliance will be submitted by November 1.

Janet Gully will be meeting with DHS web site staff to suggest changes that will improve access to Early Intervention materials through one page. She informed the group that, currently, the Council meeting notice can be found through the main DHS page (click on calendar). A Council retreat is being planned to help members come together as a working body and work to address issues, emphasizing the importance of the Council in strategic planning as it relates to the APR. Council members voted to hold the retreat on Thursday, May 8, 2008, the date that most Council members could attend. (The meeting will be held in Springfield from 9:00 a.m. until 3:30 p.m.) Ms. Gully welcomed Dr. Constance Williams, Associate Deputy Clinical Director, Child and Adolescent Services, Division of Mental Health, DHS.

Nyle Robinson reviewed the data provided in the Lead Agency report. He also reviewed the following charts (provided as attachments to the Lead Agency report): an analysis of service delays, birth by race/ethnicity, births by region, and Early Intervention Program child outcome progress data. Data have been shared with the work groups. Issues that were discussed by Council members with input from the audience included: family options for providers and family choice, rates, transportation costs to support services in natural environments, infrastructure needs in growing communities, provider recruitment, part-time providers, and provider scheduling. The process to measure child outcomes was discussed in more detail. Positive comments were provided about the family book to support transition, "When I am Three," which was a joint project with the IL State Board of Education. The book will be made available in Spanish.

V. New Business

No new business was identified.

The meeting adjourned at 11:57 a.m.