Population-Based Estimates of Minority Children’s Receipt of ADHD Diagnosis and Treatment in the U.S.

Paul Morgan, Pennsylvania State University
Jeremy Staff, Pennsylvania State University
Marianne M. Hillemeier, Pennsylvania State University
Steven Maczuga, Pennsylvania State University

Our study had two purposes. First, we investigated whether U.S. schoolchildren who are racial/ethnic minorities are under-diagnosed with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Second, we investigated whether, for those schoolchildren who received an ADHD diagnosis, whether racial/ethnic minorities are less likely to receive treatment for ADHD, as indicated by their use of prescription medication. Results indicated that schoolchildren who are Black, Hispanic, and Asian are less likely to receive an ADHD diagnosis, both prior to and after extensive statistical control. This pattern was also evident at both 5th and 8th grade. The estimates were highly similar at both time periods (OR ranges of .18 to .54 and .17 to .41, respectively). Those racial/ethnic minority schoolchildren who had received an ADHD diagnosis were also less likely to receive treatment. This pattern was again evident in both 5th and 8th grade (OR ranges of .15 to .27 and .09 to .24).

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Presented in Poster Session 7