Local Community Health Services including the Child Health Nurse provides universal child and family supports and can also refer families and their children to medical and specialised ECI services if required.

The family's local General Practitioner (GP) can refer families to a developmental paediatrician if there are significant concerns about the child's development. Paediatricians can assess, evaluate and provide treatment for children and thier families with a wide range of behavioural and developmental difficulties.
Under the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS), the Early Childhood Early Intervention (ECEI) approach is the way most ECI services will be delivered across Australia for children 0-6 years who have disability and/or developmental delay. Families can call the NDIS on 1800 800 110, or they can be referred to an ECEI early childhood partner by their GP, child and family health nurse or paediatrician, or the child's preschool or child care educator. Please look at the NDIS site for further information and to see whether the NDIS has been rolled out in your area - www.ndis.gov.au/ecei.

"Choosing Quality Early Childhood Intervention Services and Supports for your Child: What you need to know" is a booklet for families which provide information on what quality evidence-based services and supports look like, to assist families in choosing the right supports and services for their child and family. Click here to view.

The Raising Children Network provides up-to-date information for families explaining ECI, the NDIS and the ECEI Approach with a section on autism. Click here for more information.

Children and Young People with Disability Australia (CYDA) is the national advocacy body which represents children and young people (aged -25) with disability. Visit www.cdya.org.au or telephone 1800 222 660.


Parent Line (which incorporates the Early Childhood Intervention Infoline) can provide information about a range of services for young children and their families in NSW, including those seeking early childhood intervention.

Australian Capital Territory
Tel: 02 6287 3833
Web: www.parentlineact.org.au

New South Wales
Tel: 1300 130 052
Web: www.parentline.org.au

Tel: 1300 301 300
Web: www.parentline.com.au

South Australia
Tel: 1300 364 100
Web: www.parenting.sa.gov.au

Tel: 1300 808 178

Tel: 13 22 89
Web: www.education.vic.gov.au/about/contact/Pages/parentline.aspx

Western Australia
Tel: 1300 654 432
Web: www.communities.wa.gov.au/communities-in-focus/parenting_and_children/parentingwa/Pages/Parenting-WA-Line.aspx

Local specialist ECI services generally offer support to families of children with a broad range of disabilities and provide services within a particular geographical area.

Disability Advocacy is acting, speaking or writing to promote, protect and defend the human rights of people with disability - to ensure that they are valued members of the community. It must be independent and not influenced by any relationships that might exist between the advocate, the agency employing the advocate, or any party involved in the issue for which advocacy is being undertaken.

Disability advocates can take action on their own behalf, or can assist another person, or a group of people with disability – they may work in a paid or voluntary capacity. Their work can include:

  • providing information to people with disability about their human rights, and identifying instances of discrimination
  • assisting people with disability to uphold their rights by speaking with and writing to people and organisations to raise awareness of problems and seek solutions
  • helping people with disability negotiate complaints processes or legal action to enforce their human rights
  • writing submissions and lobbying government to make changes that promote and protect the rights of people with disability
  • campaigning for social change by speaking to the media to raise awareness and highlight situations where people with disability are treated unfairly

The National Disability Advocacy Program (NDAP) provides people with disability with access to effective disability advocacy that promotes, protects and ensures their full and equal enjoyment of all human rights enabling community participation.

To locate disability advocacy services in your state, please click here to visit the Department of Social Services, Disability Advocacy Finder.