Do Stimulant Medications Improve Educational and Behavioral Outcomes for Children with Adhd?

48 Pages Posted: 8 Jun 2013 Last revised: 16 Mar 2023

See all articles by Janet Currie

Janet Currie

Princeton University; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)

Mark Stabile

INSEAD; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Lauren Eden Jones

The Ohio State University

Date Written: June 2013

Abstract

We examine the effects of a policy change in the province of Quebec, Canada which greatly expanded insurance coverage for prescription medications. We show that the change was associated with a sharp increase in the use of stimulant medications commonly prescribed for ADHD in Quebec relative to the rest of Canada. We ask whether this increase in medication use was associated with improvements in emotional functioning or academic outcomes among children with ADHD. We find little evidence of improvement in either the medium or the long run. Our results are silent on the effects on optimal use of medication for ADHD, but suggest that expanding medication in a community setting had little positive benefit and may have had harmful effects given the average way these drugs are used in the community.

Suggested Citation

Currie, Janet and Stabile, Mark and Jones, Lauren Eden, Do Stimulant Medications Improve Educational and Behavioral Outcomes for Children with Adhd? (June 2013). NBER Working Paper No. w19105, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2276368

Janet Currie (Contact Author)

Princeton University ( email )

Princeton, NJ 08544-1021
United States
6092587393 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.princeton.edu/~jcurrie

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) ( email )

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

Mark Stabile

INSEAD ( email )

Boulevard de Constance
F-77305 Fontainebleau Cedex
France

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Lauren Eden Jones

The Ohio State University ( email )

1787 Neil Avenue
Columbus, OH 43210
United States

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