Dr BR Ambedkar State Institute organised a two day “International conference on Autism Awareness and Neurodiversity” to create awareness about Autism spectrum disorders among frontline health care workers, doctors, students and community.
Addressing the conference, Dr. Bhavneet Bharti, Director Principal, AIMS, Mohaligave insights into various myths associated with autism spectrum disorder, clarified the misconceptions with scientific literature and made a case for acceptance of neurodiversity in the community. Dr Jessica Bryan from University of Toronto shared her experience regarding use of social ABC approach in autism and clarified doubts of the delegates. DrPrahbhjotMalhi form PGIMER, Chandigarh highlighted the need for early diagnosis of autism in schools and clinics,and discussed the red flags and symptoms of autism spectrum disorders. Dr Nidhi Malhotra from AIMS, Mohali discussed the role of medications in the management of Autism and spoke about principles of pharmacotherapy, so the children receive tailor made medications when indicated, with best response and minimum side effects. Dr Sharmila Mukherjee enlightened the audience about the disability certification in Autism. On Day 2, Dr. Olaf from McMaster University, Canada apprised the delegates about the ICF framework and biopsychosocial approach in Autism. Parents of children with autsim shared their experience and journey. A Panel of Experts comprising of Madam MadhaviKataria, IAS, Director, Social Security, Women and Child Development, Punjab; Mohali; SAP, Mohali members: Dr. Sunil Mehta, Dr Jitender&DrPrabhjeet; Dr. Arun Singh and Dr. Jaskiran from RBSK, Dr. Kavita Das, Principal Saint John’s School, Chandigarh, Dr. Ekram Goyal from AIMS, Mohali; Dr. Sunita Seshadri from NIPCCD, Mohali deliberated upon various aspects of autism acceptance for a more inclusive community; role of RBSK and grassroot workers and came up with points for an action plan for Mohali District that shall be actualized in near future.
Moreover, to make people aware about World Autism Day, the district administration complex was illuminated with blue light. Mohali Deputy Commissioner Aashika Jain said that every year World Autism Awareness Day (WAAD) is observed on April 02. Autism typically appears during the first three years of life. The three main areas affected in Persons with Autism are- Social relationships (Interaction with people), Communication (Speaking as well as understanding what others say) and Imagination (Presence of unusual and repetitive behaviour as well as interest).
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