About the International Adoption Health Program
The International Adoption Health Program strives to meet the needs of both your family and your adoptive child throughout the adoption process. We also support families during the child's first years with his or her new family.
Our team aims to help families gain knowledge and understanding of the implication of medical, emotional, and developmental histories of their potential child(ren) and to offer guidance during transition phase of the adoption process and beyond.
Review of the child's records can help a family understand more about their prospective child and recognize the issues this child may have upon arrival or transition into their home. Pre-adoption counseling helps parents make an informed decision about whether the child is a good fit for their family and to appropriately prepare for bringing the child home. Preparing for meeting and travelling with the child and understanding immediate physical and behavioral needs can help ease the travel and transition period both the child and the parents.
Our consultation service is available to adoptive families, pediatricians and other healthcare providers. Initial consultation shortly after the child's arrival into the home will be with a pediatrician and an occupational therapist. Our team members have extensive experience caring for adopted children who:
- Have special healthcare and developmental needs
- Have lived in institutions or foster homes
- Have been exposed to drugs, alcohol or other toxins
- Have a biological family history of psychiatric disease
- Have experienced, witnessed or been an active part of abuse or neglect
Early emotional adjustment to the new family, growth, development, feeding, sleeping, health issues and immunization planning are among the issues our team will address. Our team works to review the child's history; help educate the family about potential issues; support adoptive parents in the early, post-adoption issues; and is there to support children and families if they're faced with longer term challenges.
Consultation is also available for children who have already been with their families for months or years, and whose emerging or persisting issues may be physical, behavioral or developmental.
Our team of physicians also support families by communicating with their primary pediatricians concerning the ongoing care of referred children. To empower families with the best knowledge and care they may need to help their child thrive, our team also makes referrals to specialists at The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia and community resources when indicated.
Therapy is often recommended for children who have special healthcare and developmental needs, who have lived in institutions or foster homes, and who may have experienced abuse or neglect. Through various therapies available at CHOP, our team helps facilitate the advancement of developmental skills, feeding and nutrition.