Speaking from his Midtown office on Sunday, the Democratic senior senator called on college students to return from their summer break with a sobriety plan to get their abuse of prescription ADHD pills under control.
Schumer said that 35 percent of all college kids report using drugs like Adderall and Ritalin to help them study.
“That’s sort of academic doping,” he said. “There are better ways to pull an all-nighter and stay up. There’s coffee, there’s things like NoDoz.”
Schumer also placed the onus on colleges to put infrastructure in place to prevent prescription drug abuse. One of his more radical suggestions was the implementation of a new standard for diagnosing students with learning disorders and monitoring them while they are on prescription drugs.
“For somebody to call up and say ‘well, my doctor prescribed it at home, send me pills, here’s the prescription number…’ that’s not good enough,” he said. “If a student gets 100 or 200 Adderall pills, even if they are legitimately entitled, they may lend a bunch to their friends.”
He also suggested that campus health centers should gather patient history on college students, and if they are unable, school health centers shouldn’t diagnose or prescribe such medication at all.
“We want SUNY and our private colleges to start being careful when it comes to these drugs,” said the senator.
He also recommended short-term counseling, time management workshops, and medication consultation. Students could even be made to sign contracts or undergo mental health evaluations to verify a diagnosis.
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