A critical priority in allied health today is the efficient delivery of comprehensive services with the family and professionals as equal partners. In rural areas this is particularly important because of sparsely located populations and limited distribution of services. Few facilities in the rural community are able to deliver comprehensive services to a wide geographical area. Location of the services also presents additional burdens on the rural family with a developmentally disabled child. In this paper the stages of program development to meet a specific regional health need are described. The use and characteristics of a mobile program of early intervention serving developmentally disabled infants and preschoolers in rural areas of southwestern New York State are discussed. The practical application of this approach is considered.

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