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Soc Psychiatry Psychiatr Epidemiol. 2017 Aug;52(8):1005-1013. doi: 10.1007/s00127-017-1384-y. Epub 2017 Apr 29.

Trends in non-help-seeking for mental disorders in Germany between 1997-1999 and 2009-2012: a repeated cross-sectional study.

Author information

1
Medical Sociology, Institute of Epidemiology and Preventive Medicine, University of Regensburg, Dr.-Gessler-Str. 17, 93051, Regensburg, Germany. susanne.brandstetter@klinik.uni-regensburg.de.
2
Medical Sociology, Institute of Epidemiology and Preventive Medicine, University of Regensburg, Dr.-Gessler-Str. 17, 93051, Regensburg, Germany.
3
Department of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy, University Medicine Greifswald, Greifswald, Germany.
4
Psychologische Hochschule Berlin, Berlin, Germany.
5
Department of Epidemiology and Health Monitoring, Robert Koch Institute, Berlin, Germany.
6
Institute of Epidemiology and Preventive Medicine, University of Regensburg, Regensburg, Germany.
7
Institute for Community Medicine, University Medicine Greifswald, Greifswald, Germany.

Abstract

PURPOSE:

This study sought to examine trends in non-help-seeking for mental disorders among persons with a prevalent mental disorder (12-month prevalence) in Germany between 1997-1999 and 2009-2012.

METHODS:

We examined data from 1909 persons aged 18-65 years who participated in two independent, repeated cross-sectional surveys (German National Interview and Examination Study 1997-1999, German Health Interview and Examination Survey for Adults 2009-2012) conducted 12 years apart. Prevalent mental disorders (12-month prevalence) were determined using the Composite International Diagnostic Interview, which included information on lifetime help-seeking for mental health problems. Correlates of self-reported help-seeking were analyzed according to Andersen's Behavioral Model. Multivariable Poisson regression models were used to assess time trends in the directly standardized and model-adjusted prevalence of non-help-seeking across strata of socio-economic and clinical variables.

RESULTS:

The proportion of people with a prevalent mental disorder who have never sought help in their lifetime decreased significantly from 62% (95% CI 58.7-64.7) to 57% (95% CI 52.2-60.9) between 1997-1999 and 2009-2012 in adults aged 18-65 years in Germany. Downward trends in non-help-seeking occurred in all investigated strata and reached statistical significance in women, in people who were living alone, people with medium educational level, people living in middle-sized communities, people with non-statutory health insurance, smokers, and people with co-existing somatic conditions.

CONCLUSION:

Despite a downward trend over the course of 12 years, a large proportion of people suffering from mental disorders are still not seeking treatment in Germany. Further efforts to increase uptake of help-seeking for mental disorders in hard-to-reach groups are warranted to continue this trend.

KEYWORDS:

Help-seeking; Mental disorders; Mental health; Trends

PMID:
28456871
DOI:
10.1007/s00127-017-1384-y
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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