Addressing depression in obstetrics/gynecology practice

Gen Hosp Psychiatry. 2003 Mar-Apr;25(2):83-90. doi: 10.1016/s0163-8343(03)00006-9.


Efforts to improve the care of depression in primary care patients have largely ignored the potential of obstetrics/gynecology (OB/GYN) practices. We describe feasibility studies of a depression screening and care management intervention in three diverse OB/GYN practices. Patients were screened using the Patient Health Questionnaire. A depression care manager offered education and referral assistance to women who screened positive for depression. The prevalence of depression was higher in the hospital clinic (20.2%, 47/233) than the suburban clinic (10.7%, 8/75) or the office practice (8.2%, 48/583). Seventy-two women participated in the care management intervention. Patient satisfaction with the intervention was high and at 1-month follow-up, 31.9% of patients had kept or scheduled a new mental health appointment. Depression interventions developed in primary care can be successfully adapted for use with patients in OB/GYN practices. Additional modifications, particularly efforts to improve coordination of care with both general medical and mental health providers, are needed.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Depression / epidemiology
  • Depression / therapy*
  • Feasibility Studies
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Gynecology*
  • Humans
  • Mental Health Services
  • Middle Aged
  • Obstetrics*
  • Patient Care Management
  • Patient Education as Topic
  • Patient Satisfaction
  • Practice Patterns, Physicians'*
  • Prevalence
  • Primary Health Care*
  • Referral and Consultation
  • Surveys and Questionnaires