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State Program Designed to Prevent, Treat Disabilities Early

A new California project aims to help parents identify if their children have disabilities at a young age, so early intervention and treatment is possible before the children start school. KPBS reporter Beth Ford Roth has the story.

The state's First 5 commission, funded by a tobacco tax, is providing $20 million for screening centers in ten counties, including San Diego County. The screening centers have health care professionals that try to identify children who may have with developmental or physical disabilities.

Kris Perry is the Executive Director of California First 5. She says it's crucial to detect and treat these problems as early in a child's life as possible.

Perry: "In fact they may even be resolved before a child reaches school so they're as capable and able to meet all the expectations of the kindergarten through twelfth grade system that we know that there are."

The screening is available to all children five years of age and younger. Beth Ford Roth, KPBS news.

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