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Quality issues in the treatment of depression in general practice.

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School of Psychology and Communication, University of Ulster, Jordanstown, Newtownabbey, Northern Ireland, UK.


This paper is concerned with quality issues in the treatment of depression by general practitioners (GPs). The main focus of inquiry of the paper is the utilisation of patient-centred care in general practice. The utility of this approach will be demonstrated at a general level, but more specifically its importance for guiding GP-patient consultations involving individuals suffering from depression will be highlighted. The results of this study, in which both GPs and sufferers of depression were interviewed, indicated that a patient-centred style is often very much contingent on issues such as time, and whether the doctor feels the patient can cope with such an approach. However, results from both sets of interviews indicate a particularly strong recognition of the need for a patient-centred style in the treatment of depression in general practice.

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