They state that the city
‘Lacks occupational therapists while government has no record of autistic children. It is believed that the rate of occurrence of the disorder in India is 1 in every 250 children.’
The lack of occupational therapists is one of the major reasons that parents are depending on NGOs.
Deepali Awasthi, who has an autistic son started her own NGO called Kanha society for creative development, however she was unable to continue and now runs workshops on RDI (Relation Development Intervention).
She told The Times of India
“My son suffers from autism and I have been using the RDI therapy on him, which I found to be very effective. While most of the occupational therapists do not suggest this therapy in Bhopal, it is practiced actively in Delhi and Mumbai,”
Occupational therapists are expensive and unaffordable for most parents.
Occupational therapist, Vikas Kadam is the only therapist working in a tertiary care hospital in the state capital.
“It is true that there are only about 12 occupational therapists in the city. While many choose to work abroad, others are settled in the metro cities. Bhopal being the capital of the state should have courses in local medical colleges to meet the shortage of therapists,”
Occupational therapist Poonam Bichpuria, tells of how the government have failed miserably to provide proper aid and awareness.
“Early intervention is necessary when it comes to autism and parents are unable to detect it because of the lack of awareness about both autism and the modern therapies,”
The full article in The Times of India can be found here