Treatment and adequacy of treatment of mental disorders among respondents to the Mexico National Comorbidity Survey

Am J Psychiatry. 2006 Aug;163(8):1371-8. doi: 10.1176/ajp.2006.163.8.1371.


Objective: This study described the rate and adequacy of mental health service use among participants in the Mexico National Comorbidity Survey and the correlates of any 12-month treatment and of adequate treatment.

Method: The authors conducted face-to-face household surveys of a probability sample of individuals ages 18 to 65 years in the noninstitutionalized population living in urban areas of Mexico from 2001 to 2002. The use of mental health services and 12-month DSM-IV disorders was assessed with the World Mental Health version of the World Health Organization Composite International Diagnostic Interview. The rates and correlates of any service use and the adequacy of treatment were identified in logistic regression analyses, taking into account the complex sample design and weighting process.

Results: The data reported here were based on 2,362 interviews. Fewer than one in five respondents with any psychiatric disorder during the last 12 months used any service during the prior year. The rates of service use by those with mood disorders were somewhat higher. About one in every two respondents who used services received minimally adequate care.

Conclusions: The authors found large unmet needs for mental health services among those with psychiatric disorders. Those with mental illness and those who deliver or seek to improve mental health care in Mexico face enormous challenges.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Delivery of Health Care / standards
  • Female
  • Health Services Accessibility / standards
  • Health Services Research
  • Health Surveys
  • Humans
  • Logistic Models
  • Male
  • Mental Disorders / diagnosis
  • Mental Disorders / epidemiology*
  • Mental Disorders / therapy*
  • Mental Health Services / standards*
  • Mental Health Services / statistics & numerical data
  • Mexico / epidemiology
  • Middle Aged
  • Prevalence
  • Psychiatric Status Rating Scales / statistics & numerical data
  • Quality of Health Care