Child Neuropsychological Evaluations
Child neuropsychological evaluations are offered to children 6-18 years of age. These evaluations are comprehensive and are aimed at assessing a child’s neurocognitive functions (learning and memory, language and processing, executive functions, attention, motor skills/dexterity), intellectual abilities (verbal and nonverbal), academic skills, and social/emotional/behavioral functioning. Common reasons for a comprehensive neuropsychological evaluation include: neurological conditions, attention problems (ADHD), autism-spectrum disorders, academic/learning difficulties, learning disabilities, emotional/psychological/behavioral conditions, and baseline functioning (e.g., useful for child athletes).
An initial consultation is done with the child’s parents/guardian, at which time initial records are reviewed (if available) and the purpose and scope of the evaluation is determined. Sometimes it is determined that a shorter, more focused examination is sufficient in assessing the child’s symptoms and meeting the parent’s objectives. The evaluation is typically scheduled once the consultation has been completed. Depending on the purpose of the evaluation and the child’s functioning, the testing is typically conducted over one to two sessions. We also offer Saturday appointments to accommodate the school calendar. Upon completion of the evaluation, a report will be generated and a feedback session will be arranged for a different day. Test results and recommendations will be discussed in detail during the feedback session, and a written report will be provided to the parent (and referring doctor if applicable), as well as other treaters involved in the child’s care if requested.
If we accept your insurance, it is important to realize that insurance carriers will not provide coverage unless there is evidence of a neurological condition. In such cases, you must provide the following evidence to support the need for a neuropsychological evaluation if using medical insurance: (1) documentation of a known or suspected neurological/organic condition responsible for, or directly related to, the child’s symptoms; and (2) a referral from the child’s treating doctor that shows sufficient evidence to support the medical necessity for a neuropsychological evaluation. If these conditions are met, the insurance company must also approve coverage for the referring diagnosis. Insurance carriers will not provide coverage for educational evaluations or academic testing, which is necessary to assess for many childhood conditions (e.g., learning disabilities, ADHD, autism spectrum disorders, and other psychiatric and developmental conditions). For this reason, unless there is evidence of a neurological disorder (e.g., brain injury, stroke, epilepsy, etc.) and the conditions noted above are met, child neuropsychological evaluations are paid privately at the time of service.
These evaluations are requested for educational purposes for children, adolescents and college students to optimize achievement and success in the academic arena. The testing assesses intellectual skills (verbal and nonverbal), academic abilities, phonological processes, individualized learning style, and emotional/behavioral symptoms. Test results can help to identify useful strategies for utilization in the school setting, guide educational planning, facilitate school transitions, and determine the most appropriate pathway to academic success (e.g., gifted/advanced programs, school accommodations, etc.). Recommendations are aimed at providing parents, teachers/school programs, and support staff (e.g., counselors), with educational support and assistance that meet the unique needs of each child. Common referrals include learning disabilities, gifted accommodations, and transitional reevaluations (new school/grade level; post secondary/college).