Bhubaneswar: With the coming together of healthcare professionals and technology enthusiasts, many rural and semi-urban areas have been able to receive some of the expert services which were earlier confined to metropolitan cities.
Some of the digital aids available online are now facilitating the parents of autistic kids learn scientific and authentic ways to impart skills to their children and measure their learning outcomes on a regular basis.
Such rare digital resources, which are also a few, are making up for the paucity of qualified therapists and doctors who are capable of bringing tangible changes in the lives of autistic kids.
Manu Kohli is one of the tech-specialists who has designed one such one-stop solution for autistic kids for online skill training and is on a mission to reach out to the parents and schools in rural and semi urban areas dealing with autistic children.
“Through our services we allow the non-professionals like parents, schools to get the special kids learn basic skills which they often struggle to find normally. The modules have been designed through specialists and after review of several scientific literature on autism,” said Kohli who is the founder of Cogniable, a one-stop online centre for skill training for autism kids.
Kohli added that this web solution or app helps the parents and teachers to learn how to train their kids some of the basic skills like how to tie the laces of their shoes, how to respond to certain stimulus and many other pre-designed skills. The parents, on the other hand, also get a chance to keep a record of the learning outcomes of their kids on a regular basis to keep a tab on the overall progress of their kids.
Experts on autism claim that there is a dearth of qualified doctors and therapists to take care of autistic kids and such digital aids can help in complementing their treatment.
Dr Debasis Panigrahi is a city-based paediatric neurologist. He claims that such skill training comes under the broad umbrella of ABA (Applied Behavioural Analysis) which is quite popular in developed countries.
“ABA therapy for autism is quite popular in the developed countries. However, in our country or Odisha it is not quite popular. But this is considered to be a good and scientific approach to deal with austism,” Dr Panigrahi added.
According to estimates, one out of 59 kids born in India is autistic as per 2018 reports. Experts also
said that India still need around 80,000 specialist therapists for autism. However, the country is said to be floundering with the dearth of therapists and doctors in small towns and rural areas to tackle this intellectual disability challenge.