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University of Puget

Publication Date

Fall 12-1-2014

Program Name

India: Public Health, Policy Advocacy, and Community


While Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a condition that appears in comparable rates across social, ethnic and geographic groups, the quality and quantity of ASD-related resources and services is significantly lower in developing countries, including India. Moreover, sociocultural factors play a major role in the experiences of people with ASD. Yet, the bulk of ASD-related research has been conducted in developed countries. This study aimed to examine how social, cultural, political and economic factors impact the experiences of people with ASD living in India and their families. Seventeen parents of children with ASD were interviewed, and semi-structured observations of different ASD-related organizations in Jaipur and New Delhi were conducted. This study found that socioeconomic and cultural factors did have a significant influence on ASD experiences. In India, very few appropriate ASD-related resources are available, much less accessible, to those who need them most. Moreover, stigma and lack of awareness further hinder quality and accessibility of treatment and intervention. While many non-governmental organizations are working to address these issues, their efforts are limited by lack of governmental support and funding.


Asian Studies | Communication Sciences and Disorders | Community Health | Economics | Mental and Social Health | Political Economy | Political Science | Social Statistics


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