Communication - DEALL
A speech pathologist tackles early developmental disorders
Mail this page to a friend
What is Autism? [ summary @, readers please note that this is not intended as medical advice.]

Beyond the Silence - my life, the world and autism
An exceptional new book by Rajrishi Mukhophadyay, a.k.a. Tito, an Indian boy with autism.
November 2000 - During the last decade or so it has been increasingly apparent that children with early developmental disorders such as Specific Language Impairment (SLI) and Pervasive Developmental Disorders (PDD)/Autism can be helped through intensive speech- language therapy. At the same time the number of children being identified and diagnosed as having SLI, PDD has also shown a sharp increase. Therapeutic services for these children are grossly inadequate in India, partly because the condition is only now gaining the attention it deserves and partly because there aren’t many therapists with experience in the area. Given this scenario, one-to-one individual speech-language therapy is either unavailable or when available inadequate.

Note: Any child who by 18 months of age hasn't begun to speak or has stopped using the few words s/he had already acquired ought to be seen by a speech pathologist (most metropolitan cities in India now have these services). The earlier the disability/difficulty is identified the greater the chances of success in rehabilitation.

At the SRC Institute of Speech & Hearing in Bangalore, Dr. Pratibha Karanth, a speech pathologist with extensive experience with children diagnosed as having autism and/or other pervasive developmental disorders, and others have therefore initiated an intensive group therapy program for preschool children with SLI, PDD on a trial basis. Begun on November 1, 2000, this group therapy program will be implemented up to April 30, 2001. The project will be evaluated in May 2001 and if found useful will be implemented on a more permanent basis. It is hoped that this project will serve as a model for those proposing to initiate similar services elsewhere. Dr. Karanth explains in her own words the rationale behind the program, and how it is expected to work.


I have developed the rationale, goal and framework of COMMUNICATION- DEALL, an early intervention package on the basis of my long-term clinical experience with children diagnosed as having SLI and PDD. The major thrust of the training module is on communication, with due consideration given to the cognitive and social aspects of the child's development. The framework is largely developmental and the strategies and techniques eclectic. Hence, COMMUNICATION- DEALL (Developmental Eclectic Approach to Language Learning). The objective is to provide intensive stimulation and training to a small group of pre-school children with developmental disorders, in the areas of communication, cognition and socialization, to enable them to be integrated in a regular school set-up.

Subjects and Methods:

10 children in the age range of 2 ½ years to 5 ½ years, were diagnosed as having developmental disorders such as SLI and PDD. The project was inaugurated on 1-11-2000, by Tito (Rajrishi Mukhophadyay), a gifted autistic child who I have worked with since 1993. All subjects are evaluated across a range of skills, including communication, motor, social and cognitive development and individual profiles established. Therapeutic strategies and techniques include established procedures for enabling children acquire these skills and are provided in individual, small group and large group contexts for 3 hours a day.

Results: will be evaluated in April 2001 to identify strengths and weaknesses of the project. If our results indicate that the children make advances over and above a 6-month developmental period within these 6 months, the project will be expanded and continued on a more permanent basis.

Pratibha Karanth
November 2000

You can help! - The availability of professional and scholarly aid for children with developmental disorders is clearly gratifying. The first COM - DEALL project is being run at a cost of Rs 2500 (two thousand five hundred only) per month. While Dr.Karanth and others are working out ways in which the costs can be brought down they are keen tha the ratio of therapists per child should remain high. To expand this project, help by way of sponsorhip of individual children whose parents cannot afford these costs and or sponsorship of such centres in other parts of the city/ other cities is both needed and welcome.

If you would like to know more about this program, or you believe this information is useful to someone you know, please email this page to them by following this link. Dr. Karanth can also be reached at the various contact points listed here.

Contact Information

Dr. Prathibha Karanth.
Professor & Consultant
SRC Institute of Speech & Hearing
Bangalore 560084