EDITOR’S NOTE: The Andrews Center in Tyler was dismissed from the complaint on Nov. 28.
The family of a 2-year-old East Texas girl has filed a complaint against the Andrews Center in Tyler and the Texas Health and Human Services Commission after their daughter went without federally mandated therapy services. The complaint was filed Oct. 24.
Haylee Crouse had received occupational, physical and speech therapy services for 18 months because of multiple developmental delays.
However, on Oct. 1, the Andrews Center ceased providing early childhood intervention services for children in seven East Texas counties, citing funding cuts to the program that had them operating in the red despite their attempts to make it work.
The center notified the state and families in June that it would cease providing the services on Sept. 30.
However, the state was unable to find a new provider until Nov. 1 when it entered a contract with Community Healthcore in Longview.
Julia Longoria, an attorney with Disability Rights Texas who is representing Haylee, said the recent solution does not negate the previous problem.
“That’s important for other parents to know and I think they think that because there is a new provider, they don’t have a case anymore, but that’s not true because all that time they were without services is problematic,” she said.
Haylee’s parents have yet to be contacted by the new provider to resume therapy services, though they were notified by the state of the new contract.
The family is seeking immediate resumption of therapy services and an award of additional compensatory services to make up for the time Haylee has gone without services.
Ms. Longoria said the gap in services violates federal law and related state law, which is why they are seeking a due process hearing on Haylee’s behalf.
She said the parties are moving through the litigation process, but have yet to set a hearing date.
Representatives with the Texas Health and Human Services Commission and the Andrews Center could not be reached for comment late Tuesday.