Teaching hospital seeks better deal for autistic children
The University College Hospital (UCH), Ibadan has urged the society to be more accommodating of children living with autism.
Its Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry made the call yesterday at a symposium to mark the 2019 World Autism Awareness Day in the Oyo State capital.
The Head of Department (HOD), Prof. Olayinka Omigbogun, who addressed the event with the theme, Assistive Technologies, Active Participation for Individuals with Autism, cautioned against the use of derogatory terms like “imbeciles” or “lunatics” on the patients rather they should be treated with dignity as special individuals.
Omigbogun, who is also the medical facility’s Director, Centre for Child and Adolescent Mental Health, pointed out that the way a society treats its weak and disabled is reflective of its socio-economic development.
He said: “Autism is a developmental disorder that is characterised by significant impairment in social interaction and communication.
“It is important for our people to know that autism is not caused by witchcraft, curse nor is it a demonic possession. It is a mental health condition that can happen to any child.”