Detect Autism at one year!

Doctors like to pick up the first indicators of diseases as early as possible so they can begin effective treatments that might help patients. But when it comes to conditions like autism, that is not always easy.

Autism’s behavioral symptoms don’t become obvious until babies are 3 years old, which is when parents and physicians first notice differences in the ways toddlers interact with others and their environment. And therapy usually doesn’t start until after that. But researchers say it may be possible to detect subtle ways warnings of the developmental disorder as early as at 12 months – and all it takes is a simple 24 item questionnaire that parents can complete in the pediatrician’s waiting room.

The five minute screening includes questions like “does your child point to objects?” and “does your child use words or sounds to get attention or help?” The test, conducted at infant’s 1-year check up, can identify toddlers who may already be experiencing deficits in language or other types of development, according to a study led by University of California at San Diego researchers. In a trial involving more than 10,000 1-year olds, nearly 200 who failed the initial screening were referred for more comprehensive testing specifically to diagnose autism-spectrum disorders. After additional testing,  32 were ultimately diagnosed with autism by the age of 3.

Such early screening may have significant benefits for infants. Behavioral therapies that help children learn more appropriate ways to respond to people and physical stimuli may be more successful when started earlier. Additionally, if the researchers can study the disease in younger children, it could help deepen their knowledge of the causes of and neurological changes that trigger autism and potentially lead to better treatments. In the meantime, the five minute check list is a good way to educate both parents and pediatricians about the disorder’s early signs and encourages them to seek preventive treatment even before it develops.

Reference: Journal of Pediatrics  printed in “TIME” Magazine dated 16th May 2011

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Meetings

1. Participated in the National Seminar organized by Indian Institute of Information Technology, Allahabad at New Delhi on 10th February, 2008. Presented a paper on Vocational Rehabilitation of Persons with Disabilities through ICT
2. Participated in the Meeting of the Expert Committee on Vocational Training and Vocational Rehabilitation At Rehabilitation Council of India on 6th October 2008.
3. Participated in the Expert Committee Meeting on 29th January 2009 & 30th January 2009 constituted to review norms and subjects for Continuing Rehabilitation Education (CRE) Programs

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Meetings

1. Chaired the Meeting of Committee of Experts on Vocational Rehabilitation, Rehab Social Workers, Placement Officers etc… organized by Rehabilitation Council of India at Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai on 22nd March, 2010 to develop courses on vocational rehabilitation
2. Attended Meeting of Rehabilitation Experts organized by Rehabilitation Council of India at Pantha Nivas, Bhubaneswar on 26th and 27th March 2010.
3. Participated in the National Seminar on “Role of Stakeholders in implementing UNCRPD” organized at Chennai by National Institute for Empowerment of Persons with Multiple Disabilities on 15th & 16th April 2010
4. Presented a Paper on Vocational Rehabilitation – Issues & Practice at the National Seminar on “Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities – Theory & Practice” organized by Pragathi Charities at Nellore, Andhra Pradesh on 20th & 21st April, 2010

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Projects completed – All

  1. Data collection and analysis for Kashi Vidyapeeth at Madras on “Parenting and its impact on personality development of children in India” – 1965
  2. Set up Family Welfare Planning Unit for Air Force Station, Avadi 1966
  3. Set up vocational training for the deaf and vocational counseling and rehabilitation including research on attitude of employers (1968 – 1972)
  4. Developed vocational training programs in Vocational Rehabilitation Centre for Handicapped (VRC) under Government of India, Kanpur (1974)
  5. Set up Voluntary Organization to undertake job orders – Vikalang Kalyan Samiti, Kanpur – 1974)
  6. Organized several exhibitions for the self employed persons with disabilities and brought together Lions Clubs and Rotary Clubs for service delivery at VRC Madras (1977 to 1982)
  7. Organized Outreach Programs in rural areas in Tamilnadu (1978 – 1982) for vocational evaluation and rehabilitation assistance
  8. Set up Cooperative Society for the Blind in Madras (1978 – 1982)
  9. Set up skill training workshop attached to VRC Trivandrum (1982 – 1983)
  10. Set up Vocational Rehabilitation Centre for Handicapped Cooperative Society, Trivandrum – 1982
  11. Set up Regional Vocational Training Institute for Women, Trivandrum Government of India (1983), for training women for NCVT courses, advanced courses
  12. National vocational Training Institute for Women (1987 – 88).Developing syllabus for short term and long term courses. Training women as Trainers.
  13. Introduced Community Based Vocational Training (CBVT) at Pirana near Ahmedabad for the first time in trades suited to local employment market.
  14. Organized several such CBVT programs in different parts of Gujarat, Maharashtra and Karnataka (1988 – 1997)
  15. Developed “Signs for Tools” – a lexicon for training the deaf in vocational skills.
  16. Organized “Employment Camps” for the persons with disabilities at Bombay
  17. Organized Cricket for the disabled at all India level for five years ( 1993 to 1997)
  18. Supervised all Vocational Rehabilitation Centres in the country at national level – attended to administrative, legal and human resource development activities (1997 – 2004)
  19. Represented the Ministry of Labour, Govt. of India at inter ministerial coordination for better service (1997 – 2004)
  20. Developed schemes for setting up new VRCs in the country.
  21. Developed Manual for Vocational Rehabilitation Centres for the Handicapped for streamlining the functioning of these Centres. (2001)
  22. Introduced several employment schemes such as Group Employment Schemes, Self Help Groups, Cooperatives and Customized Training, worker Education, Pre Recruitment Training, Entrepreneurship Development Programs and Low Cost Aids for the rural (1973 – 2004)
  23. Functioned on the Management of several government and non – government organizations. (1974 – 2004)
  24. Evaluation Study on “Impact of Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan on Girl Children with Disabilities in Tiruvallur District” for Spastic Society of Tamilnadu (2005)
  25. Developing Social Entrepreneurship for Parents of Children with Severe Disabilities in Collaboration with Centre for Social Initiative & Management, Chennai – Developing curriculum and manpower development
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Projects Under Progress

  1. Developing Syllabus for different professional courses under Rehabilitation Council of India
  2. Setting up Vocational Training Institute for the Disabled for Rotary School for the Deaf., Ichalkaranji
  3. Setting up Training Institute for the Disabled for Viklang Kalyan Sangh, Indore, Madhya Pradesh
  4. Setting up of Vocational training Institute and Production Workshop for the Brethren Institution for Rural Development, Bestawaripet, Andhra Pradesh
  5. Taking classes for diploma, graduate and post graduate courses on subjects related to vocational rehabilitation and related subjects
  6. Developing syllabus for Rehabilitation Social Worker
  7. Rural Advocacy for Spastic Society of Tamilnadu
  8. Community Based Vocational Training for Spastic Society of Tamilnadu in Tiruvallur District, Tamilnadu
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Projects – Miscellaneous

  1. Organized several exhibitions for the self employed persons with disabilities and brought together Lions Clubs and Rotary Clubs for service delivery at VRC Madras (1977 to 1982)
  2. National vocational Training Institute for Women (1987 – 88).Developing syllabus for short term and long term courses. Training women as Trainers.
  3. Represented the Ministry of Labour, Govt. of India at inter ministerial coordination for better service (1997 – 2004)
  4. Functioned on the Management of several government and non – government organizations. (1974 – 2004)
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