Monday June 24th, 2024
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Campaign for Early Detection of Autism Launched Across Egypt

The campaign will assess children between six and 24 months to detect the risk of Autism Spectrum Disorder.

Cairo Scene

Campaign for Early Detection of Autism Launched Across Egypt

The Ministry of Health and Population has announced details of a new health initiative for the detection and early intervention in cases of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) amongst children, in cooperation with American non-profit organisation ‘Autism Speaks’.

The program will be based on broad surveying and remote evaluation of children for a period of 18 months, beginning when they are six months old. The initiative will utilise the globally tried-and-tested M-Chat test (Modified Checklist for Autism in Toddlers) which relies on parents to report their child’s behaviour in order to accurately assess the likelihood of ASD.

The initiative is technically based in hospitals and primary care centres, though the detection initiative itself is almost entirely remote in nature, based on the M-Chat test survey. The survey is returned by parents at the age of 24 months, either remotely through the integrated M-Chat application or through primary care centres.

In the case of a diagnosis, the following stage could include the child’s enrolment in a school specially equipped to deal with children with ASD, with specialised teachers and programs to aid their communication skills and eventually better integrate them into society. Specialists who have received CST (Caregiver Skills Training) can give culturally-nuanced treatment to children diagnosed with ASD to improve their social and communication skills.

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