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Acad Pediatr. 2018 Apr;18(3):256-265. doi: 10.1016/j.acap.2017.10.003. Epub 2017 Oct 20.

Receipt of Medication and Behavioral Therapy Among a National Sample of School-Age Children Diagnosed With Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder.

Author information

1
Department of Pediatrics, Boston University School of Medicine, Boston Medical Center, Boston, MA. Electronic address: mwalls@bu.edu.
2
Department of Medicine, Boston University School of Medicine, Boston, MA.
3
Department of Biostatistics, Boston University School of Public Health, Boston, MA.
4
Department of Health Law, Policy and Management, Health Outcomes Unit, Boston University School of Public Health, Boston, MA.
5
Department of Pediatrics, Boston University School of Medicine, Boston Medical Center, Boston, MA.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

In 2011, the American Academy of Pediatrics published practice guidelines for attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), recommending both medication and behavioral therapy for school-age children. The current study examines associations between child/family characteristics and ADHD medication, behavioral, and combined therapy.

METHODS:

This study used data from the 2014 National Survey of the Diagnosis and Treatment of ADHD and Tourette syndrome, a nationally representative follow-up survey to the 2011-2012 National Survey of Children's Health. Descriptive statistics were used to estimate frequencies of ADHD treatments and multivariable logistic regression to examine child/family characteristics associated with parent-reported medication use, classroom management, and parent training for children aged 8 to 17 diagnosed with ADHD (n = 2401).

RESULTS:

Black and Hispanic children were less likely than white children to have ever received ADHD medication. Hispanic children were less likely than white children to be currently receiving medications (adjusted odds ratio, 0.49; 95% confidence interval, 0.30-0.80). No differences were found in current medication use for black children compared to white children. Thirty-percent of parents reported that their child was currently receiving classroom management, and 31% reported having ever received parent training for ADHD. Children whose ADHD medication was managed by a primary care physician were less likely to receive combined medication and behavioral therapy compared to children managed by specialty physicians (adjusted odds ratio, 2.58; 95% confidence interval, 1.75-3.79).

CONCLUSIONS:

Most school-age children reported receiving medication for ADHD; however, medication disparities persist. Parent-reported use of behavioral therapies are low. Future research should examine reasons for observed variation in treatment and interventions to optimize ADHD care.

KEYWORDS:

attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder; behavioral health; guidelines; health disparities

PMID:
29061327
DOI:
10.1016/j.acap.2017.10.003
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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