Community Mental Health Journal

, Volume 51, Issue 7, pp 857–861 | Cite as

Factors Influencing Time Lag Between Initial Parental Concern and First Visit to Child Psychiatric Services Among ADHD Children in Japan

  • Yuko Yamauchi
  • Takeo Fujiwara
  • Makiko Okuyama
Brief Communication


The aim of this study was to examine the factors associated with a time lag between initial parental concern about ADHD symptoms and the first visit to a hospital in Japan that offers child psychiatric services. We investigated the demographic characteristic, symptoms, diagnosis, and healthcare system factors including duration between initial parental concern about symptoms and the first visit to a hospital (N = 387). The mean time lag between initial parental concern and the first visit to a hospital was 2.6 years. Risk factors for a longer time lag include the young age of a child, behavioral problems of the child, lower maternal education, difficulty in determining appropriate medical institution, referral route, and the distance from home to the hospital. A more established connection between a hospital with child psychiatric services and other health institutions is recommended for earlier referral to an appropriate hospital.


Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder ADHD Behavior problem Child psychiatry Mental health system 



We would like to thank Dr. Julian Tang of the Department of Education for Clinical Research, National Center for Child Health and Development, for proofreading and editing this manuscript. This research is supported by Research on the Healthcare System for Children with Mental Problems and Development of Child Psychiatrists, in Research on Children and Families, Health, and Labor Sciences Research Grants, from the Ministry of Health, Labor, and Welfare, and a Grant-in-aid for Scientific Research on Innovative Areas, Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology KAKENHI (21119003).

Conflict of interest

The authors declared no potential conflicts of interests with respect to the authorship and/or publication of this article.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yuko Yamauchi
    • 1
    • 2
  • Takeo Fujiwara
    • 3
  • Makiko Okuyama
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Psychosocial MedicineNational Center for Child Health and DevelopmentTokyoJapan
  2. 2.Department of PediatricsTokyo Jikei University of MedicineTokyoJapan
  3. 3.Department of Social MedicineNational Research Institute for Child Health and DevelopmentSetagaya-kuJapan

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