April 16, 2020: Did you know that a baby can have a stroke before it’s born? Emma Fitzsimmons didn’t, until she noticed some differences in her four-month-old son compared with other babies. A web search suggested, and an MRI confirmed, that he’d experienced a perinatal ischemic stroke.
It’s not as rare as you might think. And the key to the best outcomes for kids with developmental delays is getting physical, occupational, and speech therapy services as soon as possible. The national Early Intervention Program offers just that.
Emma, who is city hall bureau chief for the New York Times, wrote an article for the paper’s Parenting section titled, “How Early Intervention Changed My Son’s Life.”
In this episode of Move Forward Radio, Emma talks about the value of the program from a parent’s standpoint. Physical therapist Patricia Torres shares information from a clinical point of view and why it's never too early to start intervention. Emma also offers advice on how parents can work within the health care system to get help for children who need it.
Here’s our conversation with Emma and Patricia.
Download the podcast on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or Google Play, or listen below.
Emma Fitzsimmons, city hall bureau chief at The New York Times, covers politics in New York City. She has worked at The Times since 2009 and lives in Manhattan with her husband and son.
Patricia Torres is a pediatric physical therapist with an advanced degree in developmental disabilities from New York University. She has worked in New York’s Early Intervention Program since 1999. Patricia has spent her professional life evaluating and treating infants and children with complex developmental or neuro-motor impairment. Her goal is to improve movement skills in each child, so they can reach their full potential.