Assemblyman NELSON T. ALBANO
District 1 (Atlantic, Cape May and Cumberland)
Assemblyman BOB ANDRZEJCZAK
District 1 (Atlantic, Cape May and Cumberland)
Assemblywoman VALERIE VAINIERI HUTTLE
District 37 (Bergen)
Assemblyman THOMAS P. GIBLIN
District 34 (Essex and Passaic)
Assemblywoman NANCY F. MUNOZ
District 21 (Morris, Somerset and Union)
Assemblyman Clifton, Assemblywoman Tucker, Assemblyman Ciattarelli, Assemblywoman Lampitt, Assemblyman Prieto, Assemblywoman Schepisi, Assemblymen Schroeder, Ramos, Singleton, Mainor, Assemblywoman Angelini, Assemblymen McKeon, Wimberly, Senators Van Drew, Stack, Pou, Kyrillos, A.R.Bucco, Beck, Cunningham, Greenstein, Madden, Thompson, Bateman, Singer, Weinberg, Turner, Whelan, Sacco and Oroho
Designates January 21 of each year as “Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder Awareness Day.”
CURRENT VERSION OF TEXT
A Joint Resolution designating January 21 of each year as “Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder Awareness Day.”
Whereas, Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (also known as ADHD) is a disorder characterized by inattentiveness, over-activity, impulsivity, or a combination of such symptoms that can significantly interfere with individuals’ abilities to regulate their behavior and attend to tasks in developmentally-appropriate ways; and
Whereas, ADHD is one of the most commonly diagnosed neurobehavioral disorders of childhood, affecting an estimated 8.7 percent of school-aged children and an estimated 4.4 percent of adults in the United States in a given year; and
Whereas, Genetic factors may play an important role in causing this disorder, with research finding that approximately 50 percent of parents with ADHD have a child with the disorder, and that between 10 and 35 percent of children with ADHD have a parent or sibling with past or present ADHD; and
Whereas, Research also suggests that certain environmental factors may be linked to ADHD, such as alcohol use and smoking during pregnancy, exposure to high levels of lead, and possibly nutritional factors; and
Whereas, ADHD is a long-term, chronic condition that, if not treated properly, may result in adverse consequences such as low educational attainment, unemployment or underemployment, drug and alcohol abuse, antisocial behavior, involvement with the criminal justice system, and difficulties with marital and family relationships; and
Whereas, Treatment for ADHD generally involves medication, behavior therapy, or some combination of approaches; and
Whereas, Untreated ADHD may generate significant health care costs, since individuals with ADHD may be more likely to receive care for accident-related injuries, to utilize substance abuse treatment services, or to struggle with drug compliance or with following other medical advice; and
Whereas, Despite the serious consequences and costs of ADHD, the disorder is often undiagnosed or untreated, with recent results from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey indicating that only 48 percent of children with ADHD were diagnosed and only 32 percent had been treated consistently with ADHD medications during the past year; and
Whereas, Contributing to the difficulty of diagnosing ADHD is that lack of sleep, depression, learning disabilities, and other behavioral, developmental, or psychiatric problems may be confused with ADHD, and the National Institutes of Health recommends a careful examination of children suspected of having ADHD to rule out other reasons for their behavior; and
Whereas, According to parent-reported data from the 2007 National Survey of Children’s Health, approximately nine percent of New Jersey’s children may struggle with ADHD, a nearly two percentage point increase over the 2003 survey data; and
Whereas, Encouraging family members, health care professionals, employers, educators, and other members of the public to improve their understanding of ADHD can remove obstacles to providing individuals with ADHD with the behavioral health services that they need and can promote innovations in diagnosing and treating the disorder; now, therefore,
Be It Resolved by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:
1. January 21 of each year shall be designated as “Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder Awareness Day” to raise awareness of this disorder’s signs and consequences, to highlight the behavioral health services available for children and adults coping with the disorder, and to promote innovations in diagnosing and treating the disorder.
2. The Governor shall annually issue a proclamation recognizing January 21 as “Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder Awareness Day” in New Jersey and shall call upon public officials and the citizens of this State to observe the day with appropriate activities and programs.
3. This joint resolution shall take effect immediately.
This joint resolution would designate January 21 of each year as “Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder Awareness Day” to raise awareness of the disorder’s signs and consequences, to highlight the behavioral health services available for individuals coping with the disorder, and to promote improved diagnosis and treatment.
Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is associated with inattentiveness, over-activity, or impulsivity that can significantly interfere with individuals’ abilities to attend to tasks and to regulate their behavior. ADHD is one of the most commonly diagnosed neurobehavioral disorders of childhood, and the disorder also affects many adults. ADHD may result in negative outcomes such as low educational attainment, unemployment, drug and alcohol abuse, antisocial behavior, involvement with the criminal justice system, and difficulties with marital and family relationships. ADHD may also generate significant health care costs related to accident-related injuries and substance abuse.
ADHD is often undiagnosed or untreated, contributing to its negative outcomes. Encouraging the citizens of New Jersey to learn more about ADHD will help individuals with the disorder receive the treatments that they need, improving the quality of life for those individuals and their families, and reducing the costs borne by all citizens.