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Closure a disgrace

New Zealand Association for Adolescent Health and Development

Media Release
12 May 2006

For immediate release

Closure a disgrace

The closure of Teenadders, the country’s only specialist service for young people with Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD), is a disgrace.

New Zealand needs more, not less, specialist services in this field, says New Zealand Association of Adolescent Health and Development (NZAAHD) spokesperson Dr Sue Bagshaw.

“ADHD is highly stigmatised illness, but nonetheless a real one. Its vitally important that we do not loose Teenadders - in fact we need to have more!” Dr Bagshaw says.

The best way to support young people to make a positive contribution to society is to help them get an education and employment. This is exactly what Teenadders does for ADD young people.

The Ministry of Education’s ADHD guidelines (New Zealand Guidelines for the Assessment and Treatment of ADHD 2001) state “When ADHD persists into adolescence and adulthood there are increased risks associated with education failure and antisocial behaviour.”

“It’s much better that these young people are in a centre like Teenadders, than ending up in an acute ward, or worse in jail,” Dr Baghsaw says.

The New Zealand Association for Adolescent Health and Development calls on Waitamatea DHB and other funders to come to the party and support Teenadders.

Why after 11 years of struggle are health and education still ignoring the need for adequate resourcing and passing the buck?


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