SPSTF Calls For Routine Depression Screening Of All Adults, Including Expectant And New Mothers

The CBS Evening News (1/26, story 6, 0:25, Pelley) reported, “Today a medical advisory panel recommended that all pregnant women and new mothers be screened for depression.” NBC Nightly News (1/26, story 9, 2:05, Holt) reported that the panel also “recommended screening every adult for depression.”

On its front page, the New York Times (1/26, A1, Belluck, Subscription Publication) reports that yesterday, the US Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF), “an independent group of experts appointed by the Department of Health and Human Services,” made its first-ever recommendation for “screening for maternal mental illness” in wake “of new evidence that maternal mental illness is more common than previously thought; that many cases of what has been called postpartum depression actually start during pregnancy; and that left untreated, these mood disorders can be detrimental to the well-being of children.” The guidelines were published online Jan. 26 in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

The Los Angeles Times (1/26, Healy) reports in “Science Now” that the USPSTF also “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.” According to the Times, these new recommendations “ensure that virtually all adults consulting with a physician will at some point be asked a battery of questions aimed at discerning the signs of depression.”

Related Links:

— “Panel Calls for Depression Screenings During and After Pregnancy,” Pam Belluck, New York Times, January 26, 2016.

Posted in In The News.