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Volume 448: debated on Thursday 6 July 2006

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many young children and young adults in the Province are on Ritalin; and what alternative treatments are being offered. (82102)

The Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety does not hold age specific data on the prescribing of Ritalin. A young person should have a full assessment and ideally, prior to prescription of medication, should have tried some behavioural management techniques, parental support and advice and possibly dietary advice. This would be provided through community paediatrics or child psychiatry.