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Salud mental

Print version ISSN 0185-3325


PALACIOS-CRUZ, Lino et al. Knowledge and beliefs about the attention deficit hyperactivity disorder in teachers from three Latin American countries. Salud Ment [online]. 2013, vol.36, n.4, pp.285-290. ISSN 0185-3325.

Background Attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a health problem that affects school functioning. To recognize the teachers' knowledge and beliefs (KB) about ADHD is important for the development of psychoeducative and training strategies for teachers. There are few Latin American reports about the teachers' KB and none comparing them among different countries. Objective To evaluate and compare the teachers' KB about ADHD in Mexico, Dominican Republic (DR) and Bolivia. Methods Previous verbal informed consent, the teacher's version of CASO-TDAH, a self-report document that was constructed based on other instruments, was applied. The answers were examined with descriptive statistics. Results 311 public and private school teachers were evaluated, 192 (61.7%) from DR, 84 (27%) from Mexico and 35 (11.3%) from Bolivia; 79.3% of them considered ADHD as a disease. Most of the sample considered the psychologist as the competent health professional for its diagnosis and treatment. Combined treatment was the most frequently identified as the ideal (44.1%). Regarding their KB about the pharmacological treatment, only 14.7% identified the drug as the main component of the multimodal treatment. The teachers recognized the treatment effects on the social and academic functioning. Differences were found among teachers from the three countries regarding the importance of drug treatment or the need for multimodal treatment. Conclusions Teachers identify ADHD as a disease, albeit without a clear recognition of its biological components. There were differences among countries, which should be taken into account in the design of the local health psychoeducation and attention programs.

Keywords : Knowledge and beliefs; teachers; ADHD; Latin America.

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