Eligibility and Application Process
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Below are the steps for applying to the FSCD program. If you have any questions, please contact your local FSCD office.
Step 1: Consider if the FSCD program is right for you.
- About the FSCD program
- Supports and services
- Who is eligible for the FSCD program?
- Medical documentation confirming child’s disability
- What to do if you have a concern about the FSCD program
Step 2: Print the FSCD application or complete it online and print your completed application
Step 3: Attach copies of the medical documentation confirming your child’s disability to your completed FSCD application form.
Step 4: Mail, fax or drop off the completed application form and medical documentation to your local FSCD office.
Step 5: An FSCD worker will contact you to discuss your application. If you have not been contacted within two weeks of sending in your completed application, please call your local FSCD office.
If we are unable to reach you, your information will be kept for 90 days, after which you will need to re-apply.
If you have any questions regarding the application process, or for assistance completing the FSCD application form, please call your local FSCD office.
In order for a family to be eligible for the FSCD program:
- The child with a disability must be under age 18
- The person applying for the program must be the child’s parent or have guardianship of the child
- The child must be a Canadian citizen or permanent resident
- The child and the parent or guardian must reside in Alberta
- Medical documentation must be provided confirming that the child has a disability or is awaiting a diagnosis.
For the purposes of the FSCD program a disability is defined as a chronic, developmental, physical, sensory, mental or neurological condition or impairment that does not include a condition for which the primary need is for medical care or health services to treat or manage the condition, unless it is a chronic condition that significantly limits a child’s ability to function in normal daily living.
In order to help determine eligibility, the FSCD program requires a letter or report from an appropriate health care professional identifying:
- the child’s diagnosis and/or disability, or
- that the child’s condition or impairment may lead to a disability and that the child is awaiting a medical diagnosis.
The letter or report may be written by, or on behalf of, the following health professionals who are able to make the diagnosis or probable diagnosis within their scope of practice:
- Physician or psychiatrist
- Physical or occupational therapist, speech and language pathologist or audiologist
- Clinical social worker or psychologist.
The letter or report should include:
- Your child’s name and date of birth
- Your child’s diagnosis, with some description of the condition, how the disability affects daily functioning and, where applicable, an explanation of whether the condition is expected to have long term or lifelong implications
- The date when your child was diagnosed with the condition
- The name of the physician or other health professional who diagnosed your child with the condition.
The information you provide should be as current as possible. If your child was diagnosed more than two years ago, please provide any documentation available from when the original diagnosis was made, and any recent information you have from the health professionals who are providing ongoing or follow-up care for your child.
The FSCD worker may ask you to provide additional information or clarification about your child’s diagnosis, in order to understand your child’s disability and determine if he or she is eligible for the FSCD program.
PLEASE NOTE: Fees or costs associated with obtaining medical documentation are the responsibility of the applicant.
What Happens After I Submit my Application to the FSCD Program?
Step 1: An FSCD worker will determine if your child is eligible for the FSCD program
After an FSCD worker reviews your application and documents, you will be contacted to discuss if your child is eligible for the FSCD program, or if we need more information to determine eligibility.
- If your child is not eligible for the FSCD program, an FSCD worker will contact you to explain why your child is not eligible, and will provide information about other programs, services and community resources that may be helpful to your family.
- If your child is eligible for the FSCD program, an FSCD worker will contact you to discuss next steps, provide information about other programs, services and community resources that may be helpful to your family, and answer any questions you may have about the FSCD program.
Step 2: An FSCD worker will meet with you to complete an Assessment of Needs
If your child is eligible for the FSCD program, an FSCD worker will meet with you to discuss:
- the exceptional care needs of your child
- the impact that your child’s disability has on your family
- natural supports or community programs that may be helpful to your family.
The worker may also ask your permission to speak with other professionals who work with your child in order to better understand his or her specific care needs.
Step 3: You and your FSCD worker will create your Individualized Family Support Plan
The FSCD program takes a family-centred approach to working with families. It is critical that you and your FSCD worker have a shared understanding of the strengths, needs and priorities for your family and child.
Your FSCD worker will work with you to identify your priorities, and the short and long-term goals for your family and child. Setting goals is an important part of service planning, and helps you and your FSCD worker focus on what is important for your family. Your FSCD worker will work with you to develop an Individual Family Service Plan reflecting your priorities, identifying goals you want to work toward, and outlining what resources, supports and services are needed to help you achieve those goals.
Step 4: The FSCD services you and your FSCD worker agree upon will be included in an FSCD agreement
The FSCD services you and your FSCD worker agree upon will be included in an FSCD agreement. This is a legal agreement between you and the FSCD program that outlines the services that will be provided. An FSCD agreement can last for a period of up to one year.
Step 5: Your FSCD worker will be available to review and discuss your family’s ongoing support needs
You and your FSCD worker will contact each other at least once per year to:
- assess and confirm your child’s ongoing eligibility for the FSCD program
- discuss your family’s and child’s needs and circumstances
- complete a new service plan.
- discuss FSCD supports and services based on your current priorities, goals and needs.
If your family’s or child’s needs or circumstances change at any time, please contact your FSCD worker who can provide information, referrals, and assistance with coordinating supports and services you may needed.