Journal Article

    Randomized Trial of Academic Training and Medication Decision-making for Adolescents With ADHD in Usual Care

    Journal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology

    Published: June 2020

    Abstract

    Objective: This study tested two family-based interventions designed for delivery in usual care: Changing Academic Support in the Home for Adolescents with ADHD (CASH-AA), containing motivational interventions, homework management and schoolwork organization training, and family-school partnership building; and Medication Integration Protocol (MIP), containing ADHD psychoeducation, medication decision-making, and integrated medication management.

    Method: This study used a cluster randomized design to test CASH-AA + MIP versus CASH-AA Only for adolescents with ADHD in five sites. Therapists (N = 49) were site clinicians randomized to condition. Clients (N = 145) included 72% males; 42% White Non-Hispanic, 37% Hispanic American, 15% African American, and 6% more than one race; average age was 14.8 years. Fidelity data confirmed protocol adherence and between-condition differentiation. Results: One-year improvements were observed across conditions in several outcomes. Overall, CASH-AA + MIP produced greater declines in adolescent-report inattentive symptoms and delinquent acts. Similarly, among non-substance users, CASH-AA + MIP clients attended more treatment sessions. In contrast, among substance users, CASH-AA Only clients showed greater declines in caregiver-report hyperactive symptoms and externalizing.

    Conclusions: This study provides initial experimental support for family-based ADHD medication decision-making when coupled with academic training in usual care. The treatment protocols, CASH-AA and MIP, showed positive effects in addressing not only ADHD symptoms but also common co-occurring problems, and youth with substance use problems benefitted along with non-using peers.

    Journal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology. 2020. doi: 10.1080/15374416.2020.1716362.

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