Less Than 1% Of Those Affected By ADHD Are Being Treated


The attention deficit hyperactivity disorder is a disease that affects the brain of 6.8% of children and adolescents in Spain. The experts call for a national policy to support these patients at an educational, medical and welfare level.

Less than 1% of children and adolescents with attention deficit disorder and hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in Spain are treated, a disease that affects the brain of 6.8% in this segment of the population. According to several experts explained on Sunday at the launch of the ‘Report of ADHD in Spain’, so important in this disease, first described in 1994 and has a 77% genetic history, addresses it as soon as possible, ‘improving the delayed diagnosis of some behaviors erroneously attributed to family problems or of the child, who consistently fail at school and in their relationship with their friends.

According to the coordinator of the study and chief of the Child Psychiatry Clinic, University of Navarra, César Soutullo, the annual cost of ADHD, adding both academic and health expenditure as indirect costs, is 6,236 euros per year when the child responds to therapy, and 3,880 euros when it has been undergoing treatment and begins to experience a change in behavior. It is known that between 60 and 70% of children who had ADHD in childhood continuing to have symptoms in the field and cognitive behavioral adulthood. Current estimates of the prevalence of ADHD in adult are around 4%. In adults, the disorder causes difficulties in social relationships, work and family.

However, despite this data, 96% of people in Spain do not know what ADHD respond, spontaneously. To Fulgencio Madrid, president of Spanish Federation of Associations of Help Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (FEAADAH), ‘the most important thing is to recognize ADHD as a real disorder and neurobiological origin, a chronic disease that requires medical diagnosis and appropriate treatment such as diabetes and asthma, and that there is greater social awareness’.

According to the study, on average it takes 16 months to make a clinical diagnosis, but the main difficulty is to accuse all professionals is late detection or in the worst case, the non-detection. In the detection of ADHD, there are three main actors as the school, the family and the pediatrician. Therefore, experts call for regulatory support to coordinate all policies at the state level for the support and care of these patients.

Since people with this disorder often have difficulty concentrating on tasks that require efforts as they are easily distracted and have trouble sitting still and often act without thinking. Professor of Psychiatry at New York University and the father of a child with ADHD, Luis Rojas Marcos, claimed that, as in the United States, students with ASD can be taken into account within the education system, where they are subjected to the same tests as their peers but takes into account their limitations when completing them. ‘These adjustments also are required in college,’ tell the specialists, where the condition of these students is hidden, because ‘at the end, ADHD is a task for all.’

In Spain, according to the report, ADHD is taken into account only by regions (Andalusia, Canarias, Castillay León, La Rioja, Murcia and Navarre). These territories have a general protocol for coordination between health and education, although with differences in their binding or indication to treat children with ADHD. This translates into a ‘territorial discrimination’ on the aid received by children with this disorder, depending on the region in which they live, denounced Caesar Soutullo.

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