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updated 5/16/2011 2:07:15 PM ET 2011-05-16T18:07:15

Below is a statement to NBC News from Matt Cabrey, spokesperson for pharmaceuticals manufacturer Shire, in response to a May 17 report about college students abusing the medication Adderall:

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Appropriate Use of ADHD Medicines
Shire supports the appropriate use of its medications approved for the treatment of ADHD and does not  support abuse, misuse, diversion, or unapproved indication of these medicines.

Attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a chronic neurological disorder that is medically recognized in children, adolescents, and adult patients. The recognition of ADHD as a serious medical condition continues to grow by physician groups and government health agencies around the world. When ADHD medications are used in accordance with approved product labeling and used as an integral part of a total treatment program that includes other measures (psychological, educational and social), they are generally safe and effective in controlling the symptoms of the disorder.

All prescription medications should be used only as prescribed and only under careful medical
supervision. Shire is committed to supporting the authorized use of its medications and ensuring patients diagnosed with ADHD continue to benefit from advances in treatment. Ultimately, parents, patients and school personnel are necessary partners with physicians and Shire in ensuring that ADHD medicines are used appropriately by patients diagnosed with ADHD.

Steps Shire has taken to increase awareness about the appropriate use of its medications to treat ADHD include:

Educational Activities:
Shire sponsors Continuing Medical Education (CME) and non-CME educational activities in the field of ADHD for healthcare professionals.

AWARE Brochure:
Shire developed the AWARE (Act, Watch, Ask, Regulate, and Educate) brochure to communicate information related to appropriate stimulant use for ADHD. The brochure was designed for patients, parents, and caregivers of people diagnosed with ADHD. It is distributed primarily through physician’s offices and is also available on the Internet at www.ADHDsupport.com under the resource section.

Medication Guide:
Medication Guides are available for all ADHD medications, which provide important product and
safety information in order to minimize potential risk to patients.

College Education Program:
Shire supported the American College Health Association (ACHA) in the development of a
comprehensive education program designed specifically to reach health care professionals who
serve college students through the ACHA.

Online College Health Education:
With NIH support, Inflexxion, a private health education and research company, has developed and tested MyStudentBody (MSB), the largest and most extensive online suite of college health
education programs in the United States (US). This suite of websites focuses on high-risk areas for students such as Alcohol, STDs, Stress, Smoking, Nutrition, Prescription Opioids, and more. Shire provided financial support to Inflexxion to develop a new section on prescription stimulants, which has been active since September 2007. MSB is currently used by about 100 colleges and universities in the US with a total student population of nearly 800,000. The MSB Drug website features components like ‘rate yourself,’ peer stories, prevention strategies, consequences of stimulant misuse, and an online course — all intended to educate college students about the appropriate use of prescription stimulants and other medicines, and the risks of misuse, abuse and diversion. For colleges who are interested in subscribing to MyStudentBody.com, please contact Amanda Hemm, at ahemm@mystudentbody.com or (800) 848-3895 ext. 236.

Online ADHD Education Program:
Shire provided sponsorship to Inflexxion for the development of InsideADHD.org. InsideADHD.org is an interactive health education program targeted at adults with ADHD and parents of children with ADHD. The site offers a multimedia medication risk management course with a knowledge-based pre- and post-test, interactive tools, expert advice and personal stories that highlight strategies for successfully managing ADHD. The risk management course covers topics such as how to take medications properly, safe storage and disposal of medication, rules about filling prescriptions, and what to do if a medication is not working or produces negative side-effects. The site has been live since May 2008, and is available to the public at www.insideADHD.org.

© 2013 MSNBC Interactive.  Reprints

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