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Depression Screening For All?46:49
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A national taskforce says everyone should be screened for depression. We’ll look at why, and what it would mean.

In this stock image, a patient speaks to a psychologist. New national guidelines would encourage all regular checkups to include a basic mental health screening. (Dana Arena / Flickr)
In this stock image, a patient speaks to a psychologist. New national guidelines would encourage all regular checkups to include a basic mental health screening. (Dana Arena / Flickr)

New recommendation from a national task force this week: that all adult Americans be screened by their doctor, their GP, for depression. And if they’re struggling, get them on to antidepressants and/or into psychotherapy. Is life that bad?  We all need depression screening? That’s not the point, says the panel. Too many people go undiagnosed - and suffer. New moms and moms-to-be in particular. But everybody. This hour On Point, the call to screen us all for depression.  And treat it.
-- Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Melissa Healy, health and medicine reporter for the Los Angeles Times. (@latmelissahealy)

Dr. Bradley Gaynes, psychiatrist, professor and associate chair of research training and education at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill's department of psychiatry.

Andrew Solomon, writer and lecturer. Author of the books "Far From The Tree" and "The Noonday Demon. (@Andrew_Solomon)

From Tom’s Reading List

U.S. Preventive Services Task Force: Depression in Adults: Screening -- "The USPSTF concludes with at least moderate certainty that there is a moderate net benefit to screening for depression in adults, including older adults, who receive care in clinical practices that have adequate systems in place to ensure accurate diagnosis, effective treatment, and appropriate follow-up after screening. The USPSTF also concludes with at least moderate certainty that there is a moderate net benefit to screening for depression in pregnant and postpartum women who receive care in clinical practices that have CBT or other evidence-based counseling available after screening."

Los Angeles Times: Federal panel recommends general physicians screen all adults for depression — "In a sign that the treatment of depression is shifting to the mainstream of American medical care, a federal panel has recommended that general physicians screen all adults for depression and treat those affected by the mood disorder with antidepressant medication, refer them to psychotherapy or do both."

The Guardian: Depression is a Disease of Loneliness — "Depression is a disease of loneliness. Many untreated depressives lack friends because it saps the vitality that friendship requires and immures its victims in an impenetrable sheath, making it hard for them to speak or hear words of comfort. Worldly success does little to assuage that agony."

This program aired on January 28, 2016.

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