What is Universal, Specialist and Targeted Support

The Barnet CIT provision uses an outcomes-based framework that has been developed to ensure that the therapy needs of Children and Young People are met in a whole systems approach, using three levels of intervention: universal, targeted and specialist. The framework uses the Balanced System® model (Gascoigne, 2008-2015[1]). This approach aligns with what is recommended by the Bercow Report (2008) and The Better Communication Research Programme (2012).

Universal Support

Universal services are designed to support all Children and Young People (e.g. promoting communication friendly environments).
The Universal level has a focus on prevention and is available to all.  It empowers parents/carers, other professionals and education staff to facilitate support for all children and particularly those who may require additional support for their health and education needs. Provision at this level includes specialist training such as Toolkit Training, Developing Vocabulary, Supporting with Behavioural Feeding Difficulties and advice and promotion of environments required to support education and health needs.

Targeted Support

Targeted interventions are those that will be provided in partnership with others. Therapists will model therapy and train others to implement the therapy programs.
Targeted interventions include those which have been established with the help of the Therapist or Integrated Therapy Assistant and become self-sustaining or require monitoring by the Therapist/Integrated Therapy Assistant. Provision at this level includes specific training and advice, assessment and intervention to train those implementing therapy programmes (e.g. parents and school staff) and setting targets for educational settings.

Specialist Support

Specialist services are for children and young people whose needs cannot be met through universal and targeted provisions.  At this level the therapist will provide direct and/or individualised treatments.
Specialist therapy provision addresses the needs of those children who have a defined clinical need and where the Therapist’s expertise together with the agent of change (e.g. a parent or key worker) will make a significant contribution to the child’s development. Not all children with complex learning needs require specialist therapy intervention and this is determined by their clinical need in accordance with evidence-based practice.
Provision at this level includes EHCP assessment and advice, episodes of care of highly specific interventions and specialist packages to support educational settings.
Page last updated: 10 Oct 2022
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