What to Expect at your Child’s First Pediatric Therapy Evaluation - West Texas Rehab

What to Expect at your Child’s First Pediatric Therapy Evaluation

Sept 2023 What to expect

Your child’s pediatrician just sent a referral for a therapy evaluation.  Now what?  What does this mean? Do I need to do anything? These are all valid questions for a parent who has never had experience with the therapy world.  It can be confusing and overwhelming when you do not know what to expect.  Here is the process of an evaluation at the West Texas Rehab Center and what to expect at your child’s first evaluation.

  1. Why you are Bringing your Child to the West Texas Rehab Center78 

Your child’s pediatrician may tell you that they are sending a referral for a therapy evaluation.  Your pediatrician may do this after a parent voices concerns or observes concerns regarding their child’s development.  There are 3 different referrals that they send depending on  what your child may benefit from.  The 3 therapy services that we offer are:

  • Occupational Therapy– addresses fine motor skills, visual motor and perceptual skills, upper extremity and core strength, bilateral coordination,  developmental milestones, sensory integration, activities of daily living(dressing, brushing teeth, hygiene, etc.), feeding, and more!
  • Physical Therapy– addresses gross motor skills, functional mobility, pain, coordination, developmental milestones (sitting, crawling, walking, etc.), strength, balance, and more!
  • Speech-Language Therapy– addresses communication, expressive and receptive language, articulation, dysphagia, feeding, oral motor skills, and social skills.
                    1. Scheduling your appointment
  •  The doctor will send us the referral and once we receive it, our staff will call to schedule the initial evaluation on a day and time that works for you!
  1. Getting to the Rehab Center
  • We are located at 4601 Hartford St. in Abilene, and at 3001 S. Jackson St. in San Angelo.
  1. Admissions

Admissions is the first place that you will go for the initial evaluation.  In admissions the staff will need to gather specific information from you in order to establish you as a patient.  This includes demographic information, contact information, insurance, identification,  and a brief medical history.

  • Make sure that you bring:
    – proper identification
    – insurance cards
    – custody paperwork, etc. if the child has been placed with you
    – any other papers (psychological evaluations, IQ testing, etc.) that you feel are necessary for the therapist to know (if this has been completed)
  1. The Evaluation

The admissions staff will walk you back to the Pediatric Department after you complete the necessary paperwork.  At this time there are 1 of 2 things that you may start with.

If your child is having more than one discipline evaluate your child on that day, you may start by seeing Family Support Services.  They will gather a full medical history and see if there are any other services or supports that the child and/or family may benefit from.  If your child is only being evaluated by one discipline that day, the therapist will come get you from the waiting room to start!

During the evaluation, the therapist will go over why your child is having an evaluation, medical history, concerns that you may have and current skill level.  Be prepared to answer questions!  The therapist may also have you fill out questionnaires.  This is how therapists get a lot of their information needed to determine if therapy is going to be beneficial for your child.

The therapist will complete an assessment during that evaluation.  Depending on which service is evaluating and which concerns are present, these may be looking at developmental skills, measuring strength, range of motion, social skills, language skills, etc. It is beneficial for your child to wear clothes that they can move around in and to wear tennis shoes.

  1. Recommendations

At the end of the evaluation the therapist will either determine that your child requires additional therapy services or not.  This typically is seen as weekly services if they do recommend services.  The therapist will bring you up to the pediatric office secretary to make sure that your contact information is correct and your preferences of days/times for scheduling services.   The therapist will then write up a report with their findings. In this report they will write about assessment scores, recommendations for how many times they would like to see you, and establish goals to work on during therapy.


This is establishing the PLAN OF CARE (POC).  The POC is then sent to the doctor that sent the referral. The doctor will read the report and sign it if they are in agreement with the recommendations.  Once the doctor has signed the POC, the staff at the Rehab Center will request authorization for therapy visits if necessary. Once that happens, we can begin seeing your child on a regular basis as recommended by the therapist.  Our staff will contact you to set up an appointment time and establish when this will start.

If you feel like your child needs a therapy evaluation you can talk to their pediatrician to get a referral.  If you have questions pertaining to the West Texas Rehab Center please feel free to give us a call! Abilene: 325-793-3400    San Angelo: 325-223-6300