The ADHD drugs are powerful stimulants and the drugs are popular among college students who use them to stay up all night and improve test scores. The DEA tightly regulates the manufacturing of such drugs in order to make sure than there are no stockpiles created which can then be used in an inappropriate manner.
However the DEA's tight regulations mean that the pharmacists are unable to acquire sufficient amounts of active pharmaceutical ingredient (API) required to make the drugs. The rising demand means that a number of pharmacies are unable to fill out the prescriptions.
Stating that pharmacies will once again experience shortages this year, the chief executive of Children and Adults with Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (CHADD), Ruth Hughes said, "I am very concerned about the future. No one seems to have much inventory to get us through the months ahead. There are real major life impacts for people not having access to medication. Someone needs to own this problem and take the initiative to fix it."