Early intervention services are an effective way to address the needs of infants and toddlers who have developmental delays or disabilities. The services are made available through a federal law known as the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). IDEA provides states and territories with specific requirements for providing early intervention services to infants and toddlers with special needs. In turn, each state and territory develops its own policies for carrying out IDEA and its requirements. Broadly speaking, early intervention services are special services for eligible infants and toddlers and their families. These services are designed to identify and meet children's needs in five developmental areas. These areas are: physical development, cognitive development, communication, social or emotional development, and adaptive development.