The term "related services" is defined in Public Law 94-142, the Education for All Handicapped Children Act of 1975, as follows:
. . . related services means transportation, and such developmental, corrective and other supportive services (including speech pathology and audiology, psychological services, physical and occupational therapy, recreation, and medical and counseling services, except that such medical services shall be for diagnostic and evaluation purposes only) as may be required to assist a handicapped child to benefit from special education, and includes the early identification and assessment of handicapping conditions in children.
Under PL 94-142, all handicapped children are to have available to them "a free, appropriate, public education which includes special education and related services to meet their unique needs." Such services are to be provided at no cost to the child or family in conformity with an Individual Education Plan.
In the implementation of PL 94-142, the physician's role in providing related services has been narrowly defined as meaning:
. . . services provided by a licensed physician to determine a child's medically related handicapping condition which results in the child's needs for special education and related services.
This definition fails to recognize the physician's potential role in the supervision, program planning, medical management, and monitoring process.
According to the definition, the physician's role in the delivery of related services has become limited to diagnosis. Little physician input is sought on treatment-related issues. As a result, the delivery and coordination of related services have posed a serious problem.1,2
- Copyright © 1985 by the American Academy of Pediatrics