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Pediatrics. 2008 Jan;121(1):e65-72. doi: 10.1542/peds.2007-0383.

Managing attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder in primary care: a systematic analysis of roles and challenges.

Author information

1
The Center for Management of ADHD, Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19104, USA. power@email.chop.edu

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

This study was designed to investigate the perceptions of primary care providers about their roles and the challenges of managing attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder and to evaluate differences between providers who serve families primarily from urban versus suburban settings.

METHODS:

The ADHD Questionnaire was developed to assess primary care provider views about the extent to which clinical activities that are involved in the management of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder are appropriate and feasible in primary care. Participants were asked to rate each of 24 items of the questionnaire twice: first to indicate the appropriateness of the activity given sufficient time and resources and second to indicate feasibility in their actual practice. Informants used a 4-point scale to rate each item for appropriateness and feasibility.

RESULTS:

An exploratory factor analysis of primary care provider ratings of the appropriateness of clinical activities for managing attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder identified 4 factors of clinical practice: factor 1, assessing attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder; factor 2, providing mental health care; factor 3, recommending and monitoring approved medications; and factor 4, recommending nonapproved medications. On a 4-point scale (1 = not appropriate to 4 = very appropriate), mean ratings for items on factor 1, factor 2, and factor 3 were high, indicating that the corresponding domains of practice were viewed as highly appropriate. Feasibility challenges were identified on all factors, but particularly factors 1 and 2. A significant interaction effect, indicating differences between appropriateness and feasibility as a function of setting (urban versus suburban), was identified on factor 1. The challenges of assessing attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder were greater for urban than for suburban primary care providers.

CONCLUSIONS:

Primary care providers believe that it is highly appropriate for them to have a role in the management of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder. Feasibility issues were particularly salient related to assessing attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder and providing mental health care. The findings highlight the need not only for additional training of primary care providers but also for practice-based resources to assist with school communication and collaboration with mental health agencies, especially in urban practices.

PMID:
18166546
DOI:
10.1542/peds.2007-0383
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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