ADHD Treatment Policy


Students may receive treatment for ADHD through the psychiatry service at Student Health Service only if they have meet certain testing criteria.   Testing to diagnose ADHD is not offered through Student Health Service or the Counseling Center and must be completed at an outside facility.

Collaborative efforts have been established with a variety of services on campus to provide ongoing assessment and management of a student’s ADHD disorder.   Mental health and psychiatrists will provide evidence-based treatment for the disorder once testing and diagnosis has been completed.   With appropriate management it is our goal to treat students appropriately and prevent/reduce the possibility of misuse/abuse of psychostimulant medications on our campus.

New Diagnosis
Neuropsychological testing is required before medications for the treatment of ADHD can be prescribed.   Diagnostic evaluations to establish a new diagnosis of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is not a service offered by the University of Pittsburgh Student Health Services.

Students interested in seeking an evaluation for a new diagnosis of ADHD are encouraged to contact the ADHD Across the Lifespans Clinic at Western Psychiatric Institute & Clinic at 412-246-6090, or explore resources in their home community.

Continuing Care
In order to be eligible to transfer care for ADHD to the Student Health Services, the following documentation must be provided prior to making an intake appointment:

  • A written report summary of comprehensive clinical evaluation and diagnostic test results.  (Please note that this includes the original clinical notes of the diagnostic evaluation).
  • The evaluation should include individual and family history, address any indication of mood disorders, substance abuse, and previous history of ADHD treatment, and incorporate the DSM criteria to diagnose ADHD.
  • Attach supporting documentation, such as completed ADHD Rating Scale(s)  (e.g., Connors, ASRS, CAARS) scores.

Treatment Protocols
Standard treatment recommendations for ADHD include the use of a long-acting stimulant medication.   Student Health Services will not be able to continue medication regimens of only short acting stimulants.

Eligible students interested in transferring care for ADHD to Student Health Services who currently prescribed only short acting stimulants, must be willing to discuss a trial of a long acting stimulant.   Students wishing to continue their current short acting only stimulant regimen are encouraged to make arrangements with their current treatment provider.