WAYNE, Pa. — Several organizations last week formed the Coalition to Prevent ADHD Medication Misuse to help prevent misuse, abuse and diversion of ADHD prescription stimulant medication. The coalition will initially focus its efforts on college students.
“The misuse, abuse and diversion of prescription drugs is a concern of student affairs administrators across the country," stated Kevin Kruger, president of NASPA - Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education. "Often, students who inappropriately use ADHD prescription medications don’t realize the consequences it may have on their academic career and future livelihood. As an association that represents more than 14,000 professionals, it is imperative that we increase awareness of the serious impact of ADHD prescription misuse.”
“As a member of CPAMM, the [American Academy of Family Physicians] is spearheading research to characterize current approaches to prevention of misuse in primary care of ADHD medications in teens and young adults that can guide identification of potentially impactful primary-care based strategies that reduce ADHD medication misuse ... and that reinforce appropriate ADHD medication use,” commented Julie Wood, VP Health of the Public and Interprofessional Activities for AAFP.
Members of CPAMM include AAFP, Children and Adults with Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, the Jed Foundation, NASPA – Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education, the BACCHUS Initiatives of NASPA and Shire. CPAMM has also enlisted student advisors to help inform the coalition’s strategies and messaging.
Although reported rates of nonmedical use vary, a 2013 study at one large public university indicated that 9.3% of college students reported nonmedical use of prescription stimulant medication in the past year.
Recognizing that misuse, abuse and diversion of ADHD prescription stimulant medication is a concern among college students, CPAMM has aligned on two strategic initiatives: research and educational programs. This year, CPAMM will conduct market research to examine the perception and attitudes of college students with regard to ADHD prescription stimulant misuse, abuse and diversion to help inform educational campaigns designed to help prevent nonmedical use.
Throughout 2014-15, CPAMM plans to survey medical professionals to identify primary-care based strategies to help reduce ADHD medication misuse. In addition, the coalition will conduct focus groups among college students and administrators to try to gain a better understanding of how the college environment affects the issue. With the results of this research, CPAMM intends to develop peer-to-peer interventions for use by college students to help prevent the nonmedical use of ADHD stimulant medications. Also, the coalition will evaluate potential partnerships with other organizations, associations and programs that reach college students.