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Children's treatment centre (CTC)

CTC services

Autism Spectrum Disorder Hub

Partnership with community pediatricians for diagnostic assessment for Autism Spectrum Disorder of children 5 and under.

Behavioural services

Provides a continuum of care for children, youth, and adults with developmental disabilities requiring behavioural strategies and their families within the City of Ottawa.

CHEO Preschool

The CHEO Preschool is a half day licensed program for children with physical disabilities and accompanying developmental difficulties who require a specialized environment.

Our mandate is to offer a therapeutically based preschool program with resources and support to the child and family, which can include services of Early Childhood Educators, Physiotherapists, Occupational Therapists, and Speech-Language Pathologists.

The Preschool is offered in both official languages for children 2-5 years of age who receive services from the Children’s Treatment Centre and live in the City of Ottawa.

There are two CHEO Preschool sites of service:

  • Smyth Rd./central Ottawa (English/Francophone)
  • Kanata/western Ottawa (English)

For more information about the CHEO Preschool contact Janice Forbes, Preschool Clinical Coordinator:

  • Telephone: (613) 737-7600, ext. 4331
  • Email:

Clinic for Augmentative Communication

The Clinic for Augmentative Communication provides equipment and support to children and youth who have severe difficulty speaking or writing and who require augmentative and alternative methods of communication (AAC). Please note that clients may not be eligible for CAC services if they are at the early stages of using AAC or if their AAC needs can be met by their own therapists. We strongly recommend that you discuss your AAC needs with your Speech-Language Pathologist or Occupational Therapist before making a referral to CAC.

Coordinated Service Planning

The goal of Coordinated Service Planning is to support children/youth with multiple and/or complex special needs and their families through a dedicated Service Planning Coordinator who will connect them to the multiple, cross-sectoral services they need, as early as possible, and monitor their needs and progress through a single Coordinated Service Plan.

Eastern Ontario Blind Low Vision Early Intervention

The Eastern Ontario Blind Low Vision Early Intervention Program gives children who are born blind or with low vision the best possible start in life. Provided in partnership with the Pinecrest-Queensway Community Health Centre, it coordinates services for Eastern Ontario which includes the City of Ottawa, Renfrew County, and the counties of Prescott-Russell and Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry. The program provides assessment, treatment, consultation, education and support to families and children in their home as well as to Early Childhood Educators in child care settings.To learn more about developmental milestones of vision, visit the Ontario Ministry of Children & Youth Services' blind low vision webpage.

Infant and Child Development Service

Infant and child development is a prevention and early intervention service for infants and young children from birth to age five who have a physical and/or developmental disability, or are at risk of a developmental delay.

Medical clinics

Provides medically based clinics with Developmental Pediatricians, Neurology, physiatry, Orthopedic Surgeons, Nurses, and Dieticians.

Psychology and developmental pediatricians

Assessment and diagnosis services are provided by Developmental Pediatricians and Psychologists for children with physical and developmental concerns throughout the CTC region.

Recreation therapy

Our goal is to provide the skills and resources for each individual to successfully participate in meaningful recreation in their community, if they are not already able to do so. We offer group programs, and some individual consultation, where eligible clients can try new recreation activities to discover their interests or to build life skills.

Respite services

The CTC offers a range of out-of-home respite services for families living within the City of Ottawa to give families caring for a child or youth with significant health challenges additional support.

Currently, these services include:

  • Respite for Medically Fragile or Technologically Dependent Children & Youth & Their Families
  • Respite Programs for Children Living with Autism Spectrum Disorder
  • Respite Programs for Youth Living with Autism Spectrum Disorder
  • Summer Programs

Seating and mobility

Seating and Mobility serves children and youth who require support in sitting and/or assistance with moving around their environment.

Social work

Social Workers are dedicated to promoting the social and emotional well-being of children, adolescents and their families. CTC Social Work Services at CHEO are offered to all families, on a voluntary basis, up to your child’s 18th birthday. The Social Workers work closely with the other professionals involved with your child at CTC and in the community.

Social Workers offer support on an individual, family and group basis to clients eligible for CTC services. CTC Social Workers can:

  • Provide you with information about your child’s diagnosis.
  • Review your child’s diagnosis with you to help you better understand it.
  • Help you to understand the services available, and plan the next steps for your family.
  • Help you to prepare for a transition in your child’s life (to preschool or school, to adolescence).
  • Review coping strategies to help you deal with the impact of your child’s needs on your family.
  • Provide counselling sessions focused on feelings of loss or grief related to your child’s needs.
  • Review strategies on how to talk about your child’s needs with him/her, with family members, or with others.
  • Provide counselling support to you and your partner to help you develop a supportive relationship and strong communication skills as you cope together with the impact of your child’s needs.
  • Review positive parenting strategies.
  • Help you to plan how to build your support network.
  • Meet your other child(ren) to talk about how they are dealing with having a sibling with special needs.
  • Facilitate joint meetings with other professionals involved in your child’s life to help clarify roles, establish goals, or problem solve.
  • Offer parent support groups throughout the year to provide you with an opportunity to meet others who are experiencing similar situations.

The frequency of meetings and level of involvement with your Social Worker will vary depending on your identified counselling goals and family situation.

As a team we are committed to providing families accessible and timely support. When there are no identified goals or no active involvement with a Social Worker, your file is closed with Social Work Services until you reconnect with us. If a need arises, you can contact our On-Call Social Worker or come to the Drop-In Clinic (see below).

If you are looking for help with resources, we may also connect you to our Family Resource Workers or to our community partners at Service Coordination.

We want your experience with Social Work Services to be positive and beneficial.

On-call service

  • Over the phone consultation and support with an OCTC social worker
  • Monday to Friday 9am to 3pm
  • Please call (613) 737-0871 (press 0)
  • A social worker will call you back the same day

Drop-in service

  • In-person counselling support with an OCTC social worker
  • Every Wednesday 9am to 3pm

A social worker will protect the confidentiality of all clients’ information. He or she will disclose such information only when required by law, or when clients have consented to disclosure.

Special activities

Learn and Play Group: Specialized bilingual group for children & their families

Families in Ottawa with children who are referred to and/or are receiving services from CHEO Development and Rehabilitation, or who may have a language, and/or motor, and/or social delay in their development are invited to attend this group. This is a partnership between CHEO Development and Rehabilitation and the Ontario Early Years Centres (OEYCs). Consultation with CHEO staff, resources and information on developmental activities will be available.

Come and meet other parents and children (birth to six years) — enjoy playtime, circle, crafts and the use of the toy and resource library in a child-friendly environment.

Please call the CHEO staff that will be at the site you plan on visiting for more information or to ensure there have been no changes or cancellations. No registration necessary. Please note CHEO group facilitators may choose not to attend groups on severe weather days when the road conditions are poor. The groups will remain open and will be facilitated by staff from the host agency only.

All groups will be offered in English and French and facilitated by CHEO Infant and Child Development Consultants and Ontario Early Years Centre (OEYC) staff. Schedule and contact information.

Therapy teams

The CTC therapy teams provide assessment, treatment, consultation, and education tailored to your child's needs from specialists such as Physiotherapists, Occupational Therapists, Speech Language Pathologists and Assistants offered on site.

The therapy team for Community Preschool Service is a multidisciplinary therapy team consisting of Physiotherapists, Speech-Language Pathologists and Occupational Therapists who offer intervention to children attending licensed child care programs in the City of Ottawa.

Consultation is provided to families and Early Childhood Educators in the child care setting. Therapists model and demonstrate appropriate activities to enable the child to develop functional skills in a natural environment.

Technical services

Technical services promotes and facilitates the use of computers, adaptive equipment, and adapted toys to enhance learning and play for children and youth with special needs. This includes the Adaptive Toys and Technology Resource Centre, Technology Consultation, and Toy Adaptations.

The Technical Services team runs this service with regular drop-in hours at our central Ottawa location (395 Smyth Road) and our Kanata location (2 MacNeil Court at Castlefrank Road), and by appointment at these and other sites.

To make an appointment at our 395 Smyth site, please contact Brigitte Loughlin at 613-737-0871, ext. 2943 or To make an appointment at our Kanata, Thurston, Renfrew or Cornwall sites, please contact Eduardo Guerra at 613-831-5127 or

Clients under the age of 19, and their families can access the Adaptive Toys and Technology Resource Centre (on-line) or by calling 613-831-5127 to borrow toys geared towards children with complex and special needs, educational software, reference books and DVDs, communication devices and specialized computer peripherals (i.e. adapted keyboards and mice). Registration is required.

Our catalogue can be used to practice the specific skills being worked on at school or in therapy (such as communication, literacy or motor skills), or simply to provide more opportunities for meaningful play.

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