In Bangladesh, autism has already been identified as burden of diseases and it has been assumed that the magnitude is high and majority cases, is undetermined. Especially in the rural settings, Autism has been found as neglected disease. However, there was no epidemiological strong evidence on autism prevalence in rural Bangladesh. In the Institute of Pediatric Neurodisorder and Autism in Children, at Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University with the technical support by Center for Injury Prevention and Research CIPRB a prevalence had been done by Prof. Dr. Shaheen Akhter, Principal Investigator (P.I) in which data shown that higher rate of children with autism at urban settings are seeking treatment from the facility. A cross sectional study has been performed in where quantitative data was collected from the household level by door to door visit in rural community of Bangladesh. A four stage diagnosis process was applied to confirm autism.
This study findings shown that among 5286 children of 18 months to 36 months aged group in one upazillas (six unions). 04 cases were found with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Prevalence of the ASD in rural community was found 0.075%. Among the four ASD cases three were boys and one was girl and age range is between 20-30 months. The findings also showed the parents in the rural still not much aware about the disease, mostly treatment in government facilities or at local level. However, children were not received treatment from specialized facilities where ASD treatment/ counseling are in practice. Social stigma and barriers are also found as one of the key challenge in rural Bangladesh.