ADHD care needs measure for quality

GPs should change their approach to the management of attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) from treating the condition to aiming to improve overall quality of life, according to a report.

The report is the first to bring together a wide range of evidence on the effects of ADHD on a child’s quality of life.

ADHD affects 5 per cent of children in the UK, roughly 366,000 children. Currently, its management focuses on controlling isolated core symptoms.

The report calls for standard objective measures, such as validated clinical rating scales and patient perception tools, as a way to provide a measure of a child’s quality of life and track ongoing improvements.

Dr Saroj Jamdar, an associate specialist in child health based in Wigan, who worked on the report, said: ‘ADHD has a huge effect on academic performance, peer-to-peer relationships, social skills and self-esteem.’

Harry Zeitlin, emeritus professor of child and adolescent psychiatry at University College London and a member of the report’s panel, said: ‘We are appealing to clinicians to take a more consistent and integrated approach to managing ADHD.’

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