General Considerations in a Medical Exam with Children with Disabilities

Medical examinations of those with special needs will take longer than an average exam.  Allow 1.5 to 2 hours for the examination process.  Individuals with special needs need additional time for communication and processing the information. 


Remember you do not have to know everything about all disabilities to be able to work with children with disabilities.  They are all unique individuals.


Gathering Information

  • Call ahead and interview parents/caregivers
  • Request picture and or video of client to help prepare for individual’s arrival
  • Be flexible



  • Lower lighting
  • Slower process
  • Introduce self when entering room
  • Equipment – check for appropriateness for individual’s needsDolls for demonstration purposes of the process
    • Examination table (table low enough)
    • Lift



  • Permission to touch prior to and during examination
  • Aide comprehension
  • Address the individual
  • Remember, a person with special needs understands more than what they are able to communicate



There may be cases when you will not receive reimbursement for the time and services provided for individuals with special needs.