Please see the forms below to assist you with your child’s evaluation:
Preparation for Testing
It is important for your child to be well rested and fed appropriately prior to his or her evaluation. Toddlers and younger children can be told they are going to meet a new doctor, complete puzzles and play “thinking games.” Older children and adolescents may be told they will spend their day talking with the doctor and completing different types of tests. Tests may include memory games, puzzles, academic tasks and “brain teasers.” Some tests may be fun, while others may be boring. If children ask, “Why do I have to do this?” you can explain to them that these types of tests help identify what they do best and what is harder for them. By identifying their strengths and weaknesses, we can best identify ways to support things that are difficult for them, such as paying attention, solving math problems or organizing homework.
Parents should plan to remain in the waiting area during testing sessions unless other arrangements have been discussed with us prior to the appointment.
Please arrive on time to all your scheduled appointments. Once you arrive to your initial appointment, your completed intake questionnaire, health record form, and copies of school and medical records will be collected from you. You also will read and sign additional paperwork, and your insurance card will be photocopied.
The first step in the assessment process is a parent interview. The interview usually takes between 40 and 50 minutes. Your primary questions and concerns will be discussed. You will be asked a variety of questions regarding your child’s functioning, and the doctor may ask you to expand upon some things you already have written down in the intake questionnaire. Older children and adolescents customarily participate in the interview process if it is considered appropriate to do so. However, you always will be given the opportunity to talk to your child’s doctor privately (without your child present) if there are concerns you have that you do not feel comfortable sharing in front of him or her.
Once the interview is complete, the doctor will discuss the initial test plan with you, and testing will begin. The doctor may administer some or all tests to your child, or a psychometrist (a master’s-level professional with training in psychology and standardized psychometric test administration) will conduct the testing. If your child is very young or has difficulty sustaining attention, your initial appointment may be only two hours long: one hour for the interview and one hour to begin testing. Future testing sessions will be scheduled for you in one-hour or two-hour blocks, depending upon your child’s abilities. If your child is older and/or is able to test for longer periods of time, testing usually will take up the remainder of the day after your interview. You will be asked to stay in the waiting area while your child participates in testing. At that time, you likely will be asked to complete behavior checklists pertaining to your child’s emotional and behavioral well-being. A parent or guardian should remain on the premises at all times. Your child will be given short breaks as needed. An hour-long lunch break is taken around noon, if applicable.
A 40- to 50-minute feedback session will be scheduled approximately three weeks after your child’s testing session is completed. This allows the doctor time to obtain and score teacher report measures and to integrate and interpret all the results obtained from the interview, testing session, and parent and teacher checklists. Children who could benefit from listening to the doctor explain their results in a kid-friendly manner should accompany their parents to feedback sessions. However, unless your child is older, much of the feedback session will need to be conducted with the parent(s) alone, so please bring someone to watch your child in the waiting area if he or she is too young to wait alone. A final copy of your written report customarily will be mailed to you within three to four weeks after your feedback session.
Testing of Young Children
The ability of toddlers and preschoolers to participate in testing is variable and unpredictable. Testing sessions with young children last only as long as they are able to actively participate and maintain adequate attention and effort. If they become fatigued and/or uncooperative, testing will be discontinued, and an additional session will be scheduled.
Except for rare emergencies, we will see you or your child at the time scheduled. If you need to cancel or reschedule your appointment, please call us as soon as possible so we can offer your appointment time to another patient. If you cancel your appointment less than 24 hours in advance or do not come at the scheduled appointment time, you will be charged a $75.00 fee for the missed appointment. Please note that most insurance companies will not reimburse you for missed appointments, and you remain responsible for these charges.
Confidentiality and Release of Information
Psychological services are best provided in an atmosphere of trust. Because trust is so important, all services are confidential except with your written authorization to release specific information to specific individuals or under other conditions as mandated by Florida and federal law and our professional codes of conduct/ethics. These exceptions are discussed in the Notice of Privacy Practices that will be provided to you at your initial visit to our office.
We will review all testing results during our feedback session and offer you opportunities to review the testing data with us. You will receive a written report summarizing the findings after the feedback session. This report will include a summary and interpretation of all the results obtained from your child’s testing, as well as impressions from observations, clinical records, the parent interview, and parent and teacher report measures and checklists. We will forward copies of the final report to others only with specific, written consent from you. Because of the proprietary nature of testing materials, we will release raw testing data only to other appropriately credentialed professionals (except as otherwise required by law).
If you are involved in a court proceeding and a request is made for information concerning our professional services, such information is protected by the psychologist-patient privilege law, but there is limited protection for information conveyed to others employed by or consulting to Arnold Palmer Hospital under the law. Our practice cannot provide any information without your written authorization or a court order. A court order may force us to reveal information, in which case we will reveal only the minimally acceptable amount of information. If you are involved in or contemplating litigation, consult your attorney to determine whether a court likely would order us to disclose information. Also, if a complaint or lawsuit is filed against anyone affiliated with the Pediatric Neuropsychology Specialty Practice, we may disclose relevant information regarding the patient to defend ourselves.
Working with Minors
For patients younger than 18, the law may provide parents with the right to examine the child’s records. Privacy often is crucial to obtain valid evaluation results. If in the course of an evaluation or consultation with a minor he or she reveals to us information he or she does not want shared with parents or guardians, we usually do not reveal such information unless we believe there is a high risk the minor will harm him/herself or others seriously. In this case, we will notify him or her of the intent to notify his or her parents or legal guardian(s).