The Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-9K) to screen for depressive disorders among immigrant Korean American elderly

J Cult Divers. Spring 2008;15(1):24-9.


Korean American (KA) elderly by utilizing the translated Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-9K). Based on the literature related to cultural expression of depression among KAs, the PHQ-9 was selected, translated into Korean (PHQ-9K), and utilized. Data were collected at an Asian Senior Center and analyzed according to the diagnostic assessment and severity of depression criteria. Findings indicated that among the participants, 15 % definitely require treatment for depression and 3.4 % had suicide ideation daily during the two-week period preceding data collection. Two hypotheses were supported: A high prevalence of depression exists among KA elderly and the PHQ-9K may be a culturally appropriate instrument to detect depression in KA elderly. KA Senior Centers can be ideal places to screen for depression in KA elderly who are unable to access current health care systems when they experience depressive disorders.

Publication types

  • Validation Study

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Asian Americans / ethnology*
  • Asian Americans / statistics & numerical data
  • Attitude to Health / ethnology
  • Depressive Disorder* / diagnosis
  • Depressive Disorder* / ethnology
  • Emigrants and Immigrants / psychology*
  • Emigrants and Immigrants / statistics & numerical data
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mass Screening / methods*
  • Mass Screening / standards
  • Middle Aged
  • New England / epidemiology
  • Nursing Assessment
  • Prevalence
  • Psychometrics
  • Self-Assessment
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Surveys and Questionnaires / standards*
  • Translating