‘Primary Interventionist’: The concept isn’t popular but it is good for some families and makes the best use of busy practitioners’ time
The model is appropriate when the child ‘does not have the capacity…to relate comfortably to a number of interventionists or to accept being handled by them’.
For some families who have a baby or infant with very special needs, effective support can come from just one practitioner who works directly with the child and parents. The other practitioners around the child work indirectly through the primary interventionist.
The concept is developed in 'Primary Interventionists in the Team Around the Child approach' – new book by Peter Limbrick for practitioners, managers and parents (Published in October this year)
Quoting from the book, the reasons for opting for a primary interventionist include:
- The baby or infant does not have the capacity at this time to relate comfortably to a number of interventionists or to accept being handled by them. This can be true for all new babies and for babies and infants who have sensory impairment or anxiety, fear of strangers and a general apprehension about the world they find themselves in.
- The parent or parents do not have the capacity at this time to relate comfortably to a number of interventionists or to develop effective working relationships with them. It is felt the regular calm threesome or foursome of parent(s), infant and interventionist will provide the best conditions to support attachment between parent(s) and child.
- It is felt the child will have the optimum chance of success in each chosen learning task when supported by a single early interventionist who can integrate all facets of infant activity including communication, movement, vision, hearing and understanding.
- It is felt parents needing support in helping their child learn basic baby and infant skills (for instance baby games, playing with toys, moving around the room, managing first undressing skills, using a spoon and cup) will have optimum chance of increasing their confidence, competence and self-esteem when they are regularly supported by just one person they get on well with and trust.