Prevalence of autism spectrum disorders in India

According to the World Health Organisation, 1 in 160 kids across the world has autism spectrum disorder. The 2011 census says 1.3% of children in India have some kind of neurodevelopmental disorder. 

However, an independent study conducted in 2018 put this figure to be at least 10 times higher than the official numbers. Lead researcher Narendra Arora of INCLEN Trust International said their work concluded that 1 in 10 (10%) Indian children between ages 2 and 9have autism, while 1 in 8 (13.5%) have some kind of neurodevelopmental disorder. It also said that among the children with one neurodevelopmental condition, 1 in 5 had a second one, too. 

Researchers from PGI Chandigarh conducted various studies in January 2019 to determine the prevalence of autism spectrum disorders (ASD) in India. Their report was published in the November 2019 issue of Neurology India. According to them, the scarcity of high‑quality population‑based epidemiological studies on ASD in India highlights an urgent need to study the burden of ASD in India. The availability of such data would enable the country to develop a better support system for those on the spectrum, they said.

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