The 15th Benjamin Oluwakayode Osuntokun Trust Symposium was held recently at the hospital’s Omolola Alade Hall, School of Nursing with the theme “Autism Spectrum Disorders”.

The occasion which was chaired by Senator (Dr.) Olu Alabi,  the Pro-Chancellor and Chairman of Council of the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife had as discussants Prof. Olayinka Omigbodun, a Consultant Psychiatrist in UCH, Dr. Olayinka Akindayomi, Director, Children’s Development Centre, Lagos and Dr, Cornelius Ani, a Consultant Psychiatrist, Imperial College, London.

Prof. Omigbodun in her lecture described autism as a neurological disorder that is not limited or peculiar to any class or people in the society.  She stated that it “is more common among boys than girls, pointing out that women who give birth after 40years of age “are more likely to have autistic children”.

However, Dr. Akindayomi in her presentation on autism went beyond medical management.  She advocated for strong family support and love in the ‘proper’ management of the autistic child.

Dr. Ani on his part called for increased public awareness through appropriate publicity as a way of demystifying the ailment.  This, he said, would help the family with autistic children to cope better with the situation.

The symposium was in honour of late Prof. Olukayode Osuntokun, the first executive Chief Medical Director of UCH.