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Centre on neurodevelopmental disorders at AIIMS soon

A centre for advanced research and excellence for childhood neurodevelopmental disorders will soon come up at the AIIMS with a focus on use of technology aided rehabilitation strategies.

The neurodevelopmental disorders to be covered by the centre will include neuromotor impairments, motor delay, language delay, cognitive delay, and epilepsy. Along with these, vision and hearing impairments will be covered as co-morbidities.

Deputy Director Administration AIIMS V Srinivas said that the institute has received the Health Ministry's approval for establishing the Rs 14.3 crore centre.

The proposal for establishing the centre for excellence was conceptualised by a team of Senior Faculty led by Prof VK Paul and Prof Sheffali Gulati.

Acting Director AIIMS Prof Balram Airan chaired a meeting with senior officials of AIIMS on February 15 to firm up the modalities and project timelines for establishing the centre.

"The state-of-the-art centre will provide high quality affordable care for all sections of the society, perform high end diagnostic and therapeutic research and act as an education and training hub," Srinivas said.

"The five key elements of the centre of excellence are creation of a National Registry, the National Knowledge and Training Centre, Advanced Diagnostics, Advanced Therapeutics & Rehabilitation and a Helpline for Teleconsultation.

"The National Registry will be the first of its kind in the country paving the way for meaningful research, policy making and advocacy for childhood neurodevelopment disorders in India," he said.

A standardised list of investigations for diagnosis of neurodevelopmental disorders would be developed including advanced genetic investigations in collaboration with Institute of Genomics and Integrative Biology.

The genetic tests would help in antenatal counselling preventing further birth of affected children in families and unveiling of newer pathogenic and therapeutic pathways.

"The centre of excellence will focus on use of technology aided rehabilitation strategies for children with neurodevelopmental disorders. This will be done in collaboration with IIT Delhi utilising textile technology and biomedical engineering," Srinivas said.

The Centre will come up at the Mother and Child Block of AIIMS.

The Centre of Excellence will provide reliable, round-the-clock, toll free telephonic guidance. It is expected that the quality of life of both health care providers and patients and their families would improve significantly with these measures.

The India Infrastructure Finance Company Limited will be collaborating with AIIMS as part of its CSR activities for establishing the Centre of Excellence

The IIFCL is also considering funding an AIIMS Endowment Chair for Childhood Neurodevelopmental Disorders amounting to Rs. 8 lakhs per annum for organizing conclaves, capacity building in research and formulation of treatment guidelines and advocacy policies, he said.