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Once-a-day treatment for ADHD funded

Tuesday, 19 August 2008

Once-a-day treatment for ADHD funded

A once-a-day treatment for people with ADHD, (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) is being funded from 1 September.

Concerta will be the third form of methylphenidate funded for people with ADHD. The currently funded preparations (immediate-release and sustained-release) are effective treatments for ADHD; however, some people need to take them several times a day and problems with compliance can lead to reduced effectiveness.

PHARMAC’s Acting Medical Director Dr Dilky Rasiah says Concerta will be fully subsidised for people who have not responded well to the two other funded methylphenidate drugs because of compliance difficulties.

“Concerta won’t be suitable for everyone, and it’s important that when clinicians decide to prescribe it that it is based on a very thorough assessment, and that it is used as part of a comprehensive treatment programme.”

Such a programme could also include psychological, educational or social interventions for people with ADHD.

Dr Rasiah says the funding for Concerta is unlikely to lead to an increase in the overall number of people treated for ADHD, because those using Concerta will have already been prescribed the versions of methylphenidate that are currently funded.


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