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July 2021

Treatment services for children with ADHD: A national perspective

Author(s): Kelleher, K. J., Feil, M., Comer, D. M.

Journal/Book: J Amer Acad Child Adolesc Psy. 2000; 39: 530 Walnut St, Philadelphia, PA 19106-3621, USA. Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. 198-206.

Abstract: Objective: To summarize knowledge on treatment services for children and adolescents with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), trends in services from 1989 to 1996, types of services provided, service mix, and barriers to care. Method: A review of the literature and analyses from 2 national surveys of physician practices are presented. Results: Major shifts have occurred in stimulant prescriptions since 1989, with prescriptions now comprising three fourths of all visits to physicians by children with ADHD. Between 1989 and 1996, related services, such as health counseling, for children with ADHD increased 10-fold, and diagnostic services increased 3-fold. Provision of psychotherapy, however, decreased from 40% of pediatric visits to only 25% in the same time frame. Follow-up care also decreased from more than 90% of visits to only 75%. Family practitioners were more likely than either pediatricians or psychiatrists to prescribe stimulants and less likely to use diagnostic services, provide mental health counseling, or recommend follow-up care. About 50% of children with identified ADHD seen in real-world practice settings receive care that corresponds to guidelines of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. Physicians reported significant barriers to service provision for these children, including lack of pediatric specialists, insurance obstacles, and lengthy waiting lists. Conclusions: The trends in treatment services and physician variations in service delivery point to major gaps between the research base and clinical practice. Clinical variations may reflect training differences,unevenness in the availability of specialists and location of services, and changes in health care incentives.

Note: Article Hoagwood K, NIMH, Div Serv & Intervent Res, 6001 Execut Blvd, Bethesda,MD 20892 USA

Keyword(s): services; treatments; attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder; DEFICIT HYPERACTIVITY DISORDER; ATTENTION-DEFICIT/HYPERACTIVITY DISORDER; GREAT SMOKY MOUNTAINS; COUNTY-WIDE SAMPLE; INATTENTIVE STUDENTS; PEDIATRIC RESEARCH; OFFICE SETTINGS; HEALTH; PREVALENCE; PATTERNS


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