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A developmental delay, or DD, occurs when a child has the delayed achievement of one or more of his/her "milestones". This may affect the child's speech and language, fine and gross motor skills, and/or personal and social skills. Developmental delays, especially if they involve a language delay which may be secondary to a hearing loss, should be identified as early as possible. For more information, visit keepkidshealthy.com.

Developmental Disability, or developmental disabilities. Developmental disabilities are a diverse group of severe chronic conditions that are due to mental and/or physical impairments. People with developmental disabilities have problems with major life activities such as language, mobility, learning, self-help, and independent living. Developmental disabilities begin anytime during development up to 22 years of age and usually last throughout a person's lifetime. For more information, visit the CDC website.

DD Act
The Developmental Disabilities Assistance and Bill of Rights Act of 2000, PUBLIC LAW 106-402. The DD Act (2000) was signed into law on October 30, 2000 by President Clinton. Originally authorized by President Kennedy in 1963, The DD Act (2000) reauthorizes the DD Councils, P&As, UCEDDs, and programs of national significance. In addition, the legislation authorizes separate grants for family support and a program of direct support for workers who assist individuals with developmental disabilities. The purpose of the DD Act is to assure that individuals with developmental disabilities and their families participate in the design of and have access to needed community services, individualized supports and other forms of assistance that not only promote independence, productivity, integration and inclusion, and self-determination through culturally competent programs.  Learn more here.

DD Councils
Developmental Disability Councils. Established by the DD Act, DD Councils identify the most pressing needs of people with developmental disabilities in their State or Territory and to develop innovative and cost-effective ways to meet these needs in a manner that upholds the human and civil value of people with developmental disabilities. Parent organization: NACDD.

(or: HHS) US Department of Health and Human Services. DHHS is the United States Government's principal agency for protecting the health of all Americans and providing essential human services, especially for those who are least able to help themselves. The Department includes more than 300 programs, covering a wide spectrum of activities, including NIH, FDA, CDC, IHS, HRSA, SAMHSA, AHRQ, CMS, ACF, AoA and the Public Health Commissioned Corps. www.hhs.gov/.

Down Syndrome. Normally, the nucleus of each human cell contains 23 pairs of chromosomes, half of which are inherited from each parent. When some or all of a person's cells have an extra full or partial copy of chromosome 21, a diagnosis of Down syndrome results. Down syndrome occurs in one out of every 733 live births, and more than 350,000 people in the U.S. have this genetic condition. One of the most frequently occurring chromosomal abnormalities, Down syndrome affects people of all ages, races and economic levels. For more information, visit NDSS.