Did you get a diagnosis you'd rather not hear? Do you think there's anything wrong with the kid's eyesight?
What do we do?
The most important thing to understand is that there is much to be done to help the child. Another thing, you don't have to do it alone, we're also here to support the parents. We have decades of experience, you are welcome to call and if something is unclear, call again and again. We're here to help, listen and guide you.
You have already taken the most important step, interested and reached the Elia website – the organization that specializes, treats and promotes babies and children with blindness or visual impairments.
From here, we'll go hand in hand.
It is important to us that the initial process is as easy and quick as possible, for the child and for you. As we already mentioned on the page about why ALY? Time in the context of starting treatment is important.
In the process itself there are several stages. We're going to go through them step by step.
We are a nonprofit organization and none of the stages, including the expert committee stage, are subject to payment.
The stages of entry into the Elia framework
You are welcome to call the Nearest Elia Center. Don't hesitate, we're here for you.
This is an initial acquaintance conversation in which we will listen and try to understand how we can help you. We'll explain it to you and we'd like to get to know you a little bit.
For example, we will ask why you think the child has a problem with vision function, see if there is a medical diagnosis, whether the child has other challenges besides vision, whether you came following a referral, who is the referrer and what background to the referral is, whether you have documents and what documents you have. In addition, we will check for age matching and geographical location for rehabilitation daycare centers and elia gardens.
Whether the answers to these questions are positive or negative, do not hesitate to call, we will be happy to instruct you on what you need to do, regardless of how suited you are to the ALY.
If you have documents that we think are important for our professionals to study, we'll ask you to give us a copy of those documents.
Most of the time, we would recommend at this stage to contact the welfare department in your locality and contact the social worker who cares for your area. This inquiry is done at this time to save valuable time later on.
In addition, many times it will be welcomed to the National Insurance Institute.
The professional team of ELIA, headed by our professional director who is a professor of paediatric optometry (an expert in the children's visual system) will review the information you have given us. The appropriate branch manager, also a professional, will also review the information.
In fact, at this stage, we want to examine more thoroughly and professionally the information you have passed on to us. It is also a preliminary stage for the introductory committee. We want to understand the situation so we can make sure that meeting with the introductory committee is the most effective.
For example, it may be necessary to invite one of elia's experts, who deals with a specific side of the treatment and rehabilitation, which usually does not sit on the committee.
We believe that each child is special and we personally tailor the care to each and every child, as does the introductory committee.
At this time, if necessary, another phone call will be made to you.
At this stage we will invite you to an introductory committee, and an introductory committee is an expert committee. These expert committees convene on average once a month. Payment is free of charge to the committee.
On the day of the committee and just before entering the committee itself, you will be asked to fill out a personal details form