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J Behav Health Serv Res. 2014 Jan;41(1):90-6. doi: 10.1007/s11414-013-9327-1.

The effect of telephone-facilitated depression care on older, medically ill patients.

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  • 1Montefiore Medical Center, Bronx, NY, USA,


The objective of this study was to determine the effectiveness of a telephone-facilitated depression care protocol in older, medically ill adults compared to routine care. A 12-week double blind randomized controlled trial was conducted in recently discharged primary care patients (Nā€‰=ā€‰124). Depression was assessed with the Patient Health Questionnaire-9. Primary care providers were notified of the level of depression severity and indications for treatment, but neither they nor the patients were contacted by a psychiatrist or other mental health professional. The primary outcome was initiation of treatment. Secondary outcomes were symptoms reduction and depression remission rates. There were no significant outcome differences between the facilitated and routine care groups. This study showed that older, medically ill adults may require a level of depression care that goes beyond a telephone-facilitated protocol.

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