Adolescent depression screening in primary care: Feasibility and acceptability

Division of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Department of Psychiatry, Columbia University, New York, New York, USA.
PEDIATRICS (Impact Factor: 5.3). 02/2007; 119(1):101-8. DOI: 10.1542/peds.2005-2965
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Despite available depression treatments, only one fourth to one third of depressed adolescents are receiving care. The problem of underdiagnosis and underreferral might be redressed if assessment of suicidality and depression became a more formal part of routine pediatric care. Our purpose for this study was to explore the feasibility and acceptability of implementing adolescent depression screening into clinical practice.
In this study we implemented a 2-stage adolescent identification protocol, a first-stage pen-and-paper screen and a second-stage computerized assessment, into a busy primary care pediatric practice. Providers tracked the number of eligible patients screened at both health maintenance and urgent care visits and provided survey responses regarding the burden that screening placed on the practice and the effect on patient/parent-provider relationships.
Seventy-nine percent of adolescent patients presenting for health maintenance visits were screened, as were the majority of patients presenting for any type of visit. The average completion time for the paper screen was 4.6 minutes. Providers perceived parents and patients as expressing more satisfaction than dissatisfaction with the screening procedures and that the increased time burden could be handled. All providers wished to continue using the paper screen at the conclusion of the protocol.
Instituting universal systematic depression screening in a practice with a standardized screening instrument met with little resistance by patients and parents and was well perceived and accepted by providers.

1 Follower
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: To evaluate how a comprehensive, computerized, self-administered adolescent screener, the DartScreen, affects within-visit patient-doctor interactions such as data gathering, advice giving, counseling, and discussion of mental health issues. Patient-doctor interaction was compared between visits without screening and those with the DartScreen completed before the visit. Teens, aged 15-19 years scheduled for an annual visit, were recruited at one urban and one rural pediatric primary care clinic. The doctor acted as his/her own control, first using his/her usual routine for five to six adolescent annual visits. Then, the DartScreen was introduced for five visits where at the beginning of the visit, the doctor received a summary report of the screening results. All visits were audio recorded and analyzed using the Roter interaction analysis system. Doctor and teen dialogue and topics discussed were compared between the two groups. Seven midcareer doctors and 72 adolescents participated; 37 visits without DartScreen and 35 with DartScreen were audio recorded. The Roter interaction analysis system defined medically related data gathering (mean, 36.8 vs. 32.7 statements; p = .03) and counseling (mean, 36.8 vs. 32.7 statements; p = .01) decreased with DartScreen; however, doctor responsiveness and engagement improved with DartScreen (mean, 4.8 vs. 5.1 statements; p = .00). Teens completing the DartScreen offered more psychosocial information (mean, 18.5 vs. 10.6 statements; p = .01), and mental health was discussed more after the DartScreen (mean, 93.7 vs. 43.5 statements; p = .03). Discussion of somatic and substance abuse topics did not change. Doctors reported that screening improved visit organization and efficiency. Use of the screener increased discussion of mental health but not at the expense of other adolescent health topics. Copyright © 2015 Society for Adolescent Health and Medicine. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
    Journal of Adolescent Health 01/2015; 56(3). DOI:10.1016/j.jadohealth.2014.11.011 · 2.75 Impact Factor
  • Source
    Community Mental Health Journal 01/2009; 45:349-354. · 1.03 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The primary care setting is considered the entry point of adolescents with mental illness in the health care system. This article informs primary care providers about the diagnostic features and differential of mood disorders in adolescents, screening and assessment, as well as evidence-based psychosocial and psychopharmacologic therapies. The article also provides a framework for decision making regarding initiating treatment in the primary care setting and referral to mental health services. Furthermore, the article highlights the importance of the collaboration between primary care and mental health providers to facilitate engagement of adolescents with mood disorders and adherence to treatment.
    Primary Care Clinics in Office Practice 09/2014; 41(3):587–606. DOI:10.1016/j.pop.2014.05.008 · 0.83 Impact Factor