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Child Care Health Consultant Competency 7: Children with Special Health Care Needs

(Source: Early Childhood Learning & Knowledge Center, Child Care Health Consultant Competencies)

The CCHC supports programs and families to ensure that children with a special health care need and/or chronic health condition have full, safe inclusion in the ECE program. A CCHC also:

  • Keeps up-to-date on relevant knowledge to serve as a resource on caring for children with special health care needs and/or management of chronic health conditions
  • Helps programs understand how to meet their responsibilities to provide services in accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)
  • Supports programs in planning for and fully accommodating children with special health care needs including chronic physical health and mental health conditions so they can be included in all possible activities
  • Collaborates with programs to develop and implement individualized healthcare plans in partnership with the child’s family, health care provider, and identified specialists, if applicable
  • Connects programs and families with resources for children with special health care needs and/or chronic physical health or mental health conditions
  • Supports transition planning between the ECE settings and kindergarten

Find a CCHC in your community.

Featured Initiatives and Resources

The CYSHCN Help Line is an information and referral source for those living with, caring for and concerned about a child with special health care needs. Callers can learn about health care programs as well as funding resources available to North Carolina residents.

The Infant-Toddler Program provides supports and services for families and their children, birth to three who have special health care needs. Sixteen Children’s Developmental Services Agencies (CDSAs) across North Carolina work with local service providers to help families help their children succeed.

Care Management for At-Risk Children (CMARC) serves children from birth to 5 years of age who meet certain at-risk criteria. The main goals of the program are to improve health outcomes and reduce costs for enrolled children.

Additional Resources



  •  Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)
    This website has information and technical assistance on the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).
  • Commonly Asked Questions About Child Care Centers and the Americans with Disabilities Act 
    This website provides answers from the U.S. Department of Justice to some of the most frequently asked questions about the ADA.
  • Council for Exceptional Children (CEC)
    The CEC is a professional association of educators dedicated to advancing the success of children with exceptionalities. The council accomplishes the mission through advocacy, standards, and professional development.
  • Early Childhood Learning and Knowledge Center (ECLKC)
    This website provides training and technical assistance resources from Head Start’s ECLKC  that offer guidance for early educators and promote early childhood development, teaching, and learning for children with disabilities.
  • Early Childhood Technical Assistance Center (ECTAC)
    ECTAC supports efforts to improve service systems and assist states in scaling up and sustaining effective services and research-based interventions for infants, toddlers and preschoolers with disabilities and their families.
  • Epilepsy Foundation
  • The Epilepsy Foundation provides community services, public education, federal and local advocacy, and seizure first aid training.
  • Head Start Center for Inclusion (HSCI)
    The goal of the Center is to increase the competence, confidence, and effectiveness of personnel in Head Start programs to include children with disabilities. Visit the Center for training materials, tools for caregivers/teachers and coordinators, as well as other resources.
  • Learn the Signs. Act Early
    CDC’s “Learn the Signs. Act Early” program encourages parents and early educators to learn the signs of healthy development, monitor every child’s early development, and take action when there is a concern. The program offers free checklists and other tools to make developmental monitoring practical and easy.
  • National Professional Development Center on Inclusion (NPDCI)
    NPDCI works with states to ensure that early childhood teachers are prepared to educate and care for young children with disabilities in settings with their typically developing peers.