Tamil Nadu

Occupational therapists in Tamil Nadu come forward to offer free services

The aim is to provide therapy to children and senior citizens during the lockdown

The Tamil Nadu chapter of the All India Occupational Therapists’ Association has come forward to provide education and training online for free, to enable children and elders who need it regularly.

“There are therapists in all districts and we will coordinate to ensure that those who need therapy will receive it,” said P. Raghuram, president/convenor of the association.

“Conditions such as Autism Spectrum Disorders, Learning Disabilities, Intellectual Disability, Down’s Syndrome and Developmental Delays, require regular therapy. Our primary objective is to make them as independent as possible and help them carry on their daily living skills,” he explained.

“People who are already attached to a clinic would call the therapist for help, but there are many who may need therapy but don’t know whom to approach. We suggested the idea to the Commissioner for the Welfare of Differently-abled persons and district differently-abled welfare officers and they welcomed it,” Mr. Raghuram said.

A. Livingston, Tiruvallur district president of Vasantham Federation of Differently Abled Persons said children with mental retardation were most affected, as the Sarva Siksha Abhiyan teachers could not come to the village.

The free service would enable parents to work with their children, said S. Soundari, a coordinator for Ayapakkam, near Chennai. “We work with children and give monthly review to the parents. Now the parents will do the therapy. We will give activities to children that will keep them occupied,” she explained.

In her experience, she has handled mostly elderly patients with stroke, Parkinson’s Disease or Alzheimer’s. “With such patients, their memory is fading fast. Therapy involves talking to them. If we speak to them daily they will remember us,” she said.

Those requiring services may contact the district coordinators at 9841544004 or 9677073853. “We plan to provide only free services. You can complain if somebody charges for the service,” Mr. Raghuram said.

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Printable version | Jul 7, 2020 8:23:49 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/occupational-therapists-in-tamil-nadu-come-forward-to-offer-free-services/article31278819.ece

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