CRS-Children's Rehab Services of Alabama

Bama Ears recently had a chance to talk to Emma, a Social Work Administrator for CRS (Children's Rehab Services). We asked Emma to explain what CRS is and who is eligible. Here is what she told Bama Ears.

"Established in 1935, Children’s Rehabilitation Services (CRS) is a division of
the Alabama Department of Rehabilitation Services. CRS is a statewide
organization of skilled, well-trained professionals committed to providing
quality, individualized services to children and youth with special health care
needs in homes, schools and other community settings.
Any child younger than 21 who is a resident of Alabama and has a special health care need is eligible for CRS. Individuals of all ages with hemophilia are eligible. Families participate in the cost of services for their child based on a sliding fee schedule and by using any Medicaid or insurance coverage."

What services does CRS offer?

"CRS services are available to children and youth in every county in Alabama through a network of 15 community-based offices. The CRS network provides specialty clinic and other services by doctors, nurses, social workers, physical therapists, speech-language pathologists, audiologists, occupational therapists and registered dietitians. Services include medications, surgery, assistive technology, hearing aids, hospitalization and much more."

What happens when a child ages out of Children's Rehab Services and they still need help?

"All adolescents in CRS receive transition services from a trained social work transition specialist. All eligible CRS youth are referred to Vocational Rehabilitation Service (VRS) to receive assistance with college or job placement. VRS provides specialized employment- and education-related services and training to assist teens and adults with disabilities in becoming employed. In addition, VRS works with middle schools, high schools, junior colleges and universities statewide to assist students with disabilities in receiving appropriate educational opportunities.
The ultimate goal of CRS is to transition youth with special health care needs to all aspects of adult life, including adult health care, work and independence."

What if a child has more than one disability? Are you guys equipped to handle multiple needs?

"CRS has well-trained staff that work on a daily basis with children and adolescents who have dual diagnoses. We offer specialty clinical medical programs and clinical evaluation programs in order to meet the needs of this special population."

Bama Ears specifically asked Emma what CRS can do for our hearing impaired children in Alabama.

"CRS offers hearings services, which include Newborn Hearing Screening, Hearing Assessment Clinic, Hearing Clinic and Hearing Aid Clinic. CRS audiologists have the experience to provide top-notch audiological services to Alabama's children. With state-of-the-art testing equipment, children receive the same quality evaluations on a local level that they would receive in larger facilities. If a child is found to need hearing aids, the audiologist has a vast selection of hearing aid companies and products to choose from. Many of these products would cost the parents $1,700 to $3,600 per set if purchased from a private clinic."

For more information, visit the CRS website

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