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New Coalition Aims to Help Prevent Misuse, Abuse and Diversion of ADHD Medications

Coalition to Focus Efforts on College Students

WAYNE, Pa., Aug. 28, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Today is the official launch of a newly formed Coalition of medical, mental health, higher education, student and pharmaceutical organizations that will work together to help prevent misuse, abuse and diversion of ADHD prescription stimulant medication. The Coalition will initially focus its efforts on college students.

Although reported rates of nonmedical use vary, a 2013 study at one large public university indicated that 9.3 percent1 of college students reported nonmedical use of prescription stimulant medication in the past year.

Members of the Coalition to Prevent ADHD Medication Misuse (CPAMM) include The American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP), Children and Adults with Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (CHADD), 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.

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 2014-2015, CPAMM plans to survey medical professionals to identify primary-care based strategies to help reduce ADHD medication misuse, abuse and diversion. 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.

Remarks from CPAMM Partners:

"Shire opposes the misuse, abuse and diversion of ADHD prescription stimulant medication and is committed to being a part of a solution to help prevent nonmedical use while preserving access to these important medications for those with a legitimate medical need. Shire recognizes that to create change we need collaborative solutions, which is why we've brought together this team of diverse and experienced experts and advocates." - Gwen Fisher, Senior Director of Corporate Communications for Shire

"The misuse, abuse and diversion of prescription drugs is a concern of student affairs administrators across the country. 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, abuse and diversion." - Kevin Kruger, Ph.D., President of NASPA – Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education

"The Jed Foundation's mission is to protect the emotional health of college students, and we want them to be aware that there are healthy and safe coping, time management and study skills needed to live a productive life." - John MacPhee, Executive Director and CEO, The Jed Foundation

"As a member of CPAMM, the AAFP 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, abuse and diversion and that reinforce appropriate ADHD medication use." - Dr. Julie Wood, Vice President for Health of the Public and Interprofessional Activities, American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP)

"The BACCHUS Initiatives of NASPA looks forward to engaging our collegiate peer educators to assist campus efforts to help prevent the misuse, abuse and diversion of ADHD prescription medication by developing peer-led trainings to promote healthy choices." - Ann Quinn-Zobeck, Senior Director, The BACCHUS Initiatives of NASPA

"As an organization dedicated to improving the lives of people affected with ADHD, Children and Adults with Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (CHADD) is committed to the prevention of misuse, abuse and diversion. College-age students face unique challenges concerning potential diversion. Some students who do not have ADHD may seek out stimulant medications with the belief that they may enhance their academic performance or from a desire to experiment with any possible physical reaction to taking the medications. This places an even greater burden on those students for whom the medication is prescribed to be diligent in ensuring that it is used properly." - Ruth Hughes, Ph.D., Children and Adults with Attention-Deficit Disorder (CHADD)

About the Coalition to Prevent ADHD Medication Misuse (CPAMM):

The Coalition to Prevent ADHD Medication Misuse (CPAMM) strives to be a trusted source of information on the issue of ADHD prescription medication misuse, abuse and diversion – with a primary focus on college students. CPAMM will also use its knowledge to make a difference and prevent the nonmedical use of these medications. Shire is the sole funder of CPAMM. Other partner organizations do not provide financial contributions to CPAMM. On a case-by-case basis, partners may be compensated to execute research and programming proposals for expenses incurred, as approved by the Coalition. All partners, including Shire, voluntarily contribute to the Coalition through their areas of expertise. For more information, visit

About the Members of the Coalition to Prevent ADHD Medication Misuse (CPAMM):

Shire: Shire enables people with life-altering conditions to lead better lives. Our strategy is to focus on developing innovative specialty medicines to meet significant unmet patient needs. We provide treatments in Neuroscience, Rare Diseases, Gastrointestinal and Internal Medicine and are developing treatments for symptomatic conditions treated by specialist physicians in other targeted therapeutic areas, such as Ophthalmology. As a socially responsible company, Shire is concerned about reports of misuse, abuse, and diversion of ADHD medicines, and, as such, is committed to preventing this nonmedical use.

Shire has invested in a variety of educational tools and support for patients, parents, and health care professionals on the appropriate diagnosis of ADHD, treatment options, and proper use of our medicines. As a partner of CPAMM, Shire is collaborating on research, programs, tools, and resources to help make a difference on this important issue. Ultimately Shire believes when people who don't need ADHD medicines take them, they trivialize a real psychiatric disorder and take medicines away from people who really need them.

NASPA - Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education: NASPA is the leading association for the advancement, health, and sustainability of the student affairs profession. The organization serves a full range of professionals who provide programs, experiences, and services that cultivate student learning and success in concert with the mission of our colleges and universities. Established in 1918, NASPA is comprised of 13,000 members in all 50 states, 25 countries, and 8 U.S. Territories. NASPA is committed to ending the misuse, abuse and diversion of drugs and, in particular, ADHD stimulant medication. With increased focus on college completion, higher education administrators, families, college students, and physicians must collaborate both to support individuals diagnosed with ADHD and to reduce the number of students who inappropriately use stimulants.

The Jed Foundation: The Jed Foundation is a leading nonprofit that exists to promote emotional health and prevent suicide among college and university students. Their programs are inspiring a new national dialogue on mental health, encouraging millions of young people to speak up and take action, and helping academic institutions create healthier campus communities and prevent substance abuse and self-harm. Through the Jed Foundation's existing programs, they aim to address the issue of ADHD medication misuse, abuse and diversion among college students.

American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP): Founded in 1947, the American Academy of Family Physicians represents 115,900 physicians and medical students nationwide. It is the only medical society devoted solely to primary care. Because family physicians work to deliver the safest care possible and maximize the quality of life of their patients, the AAFP is committed to ensuring that medications prescribed by physicians are not inappropriately diverted. The AAFP recognizes that there is growing concern about nonmedical use of ADHD medications, and wants to educate physicians and the public about the rising prevalence of the issue.

The BACCHUS Initiatives of NASPA: The BACCHUS Initiatives of NASPA is a collegiate peer education initiative that supports the achievement of students' academic and personal success by building skills in student leaders to address campus health and safety issues. The BACCHUS philosophy is that students can play a uniquely effective role - unmatched by professional educators - in encouraging their peers to consider, talk honestly about, and develop responsible habits and attitudes toward high-risk health and safety issues. It is the mission of the organization to actively promote student and young adult based, campus and community-wide leadership on healthy and safe lifestyle decisions concerning alcohol abuse, tobacco use, illegal drug use, unhealthy sexual practices and other high-risk behaviors. Recognizing that the misuse, abuse and diversion of ADHD prescription medication is a concern for colleges and universities, the organization will provide resources and trainings so peer educators can assist campus efforts to prevent the nonmedical use of ADHD prescription medication.

Children and Adults with ADHD (CHADD): CHADD is a partnership organization which seeks to improve the lives of people affected by ADHD by providing education, advocacy and support for individuals with ADHD. In addition to an informative website, CHADD also publishes a variety of printed materials to keep partners and professionals current on research advances, medications and treatments affecting individuals with ADHD. CHADD is a success story, inspired by the desire of countless parents to see their children with ADHD succeed. From one parent support group in Florida, the organization grew dramatically to become the leading nonprofit national organization for children and adults with ADHD.

1 Source: McCabe, S.E., West, B.T., Teter, C.J. & Boyd, C.J., Trends in Medical Use, Diversion, and Nonmedical Use of Prescription Medications among College Students from 2003 to 2013: Connecting the Dots, Addictive Behaviors (2014), doi: 10.1016/j.addbeh.2014.03.008

Kelly Walker
[email protected]

SOURCE Coalition to Prevent ADHD Medication Misuse

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