In 2014, 15.7 million adults suffered from at least one major depressive episode, making it one of the most common behavioral health conditions in the U.S., according to the National Institute of Mental Health. Major depression is also highly treatable once diagnosed, so making that diagnosis is critical.

Recommendations made today by an independent expert panel could make it easier for adults to get the treatment they need. For the first time, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommends that all adults be screened for depression by their primary care physician at least once. In addition to screening the general adult population, the task force includes the recommendation that women who are pregnant or have recently given birth be screened by their primary care physician.

This is a critical step to integrating behavioral and physical health in primary care.  Hospitals see first-hand the heavy toll that untreated, serious mental illness imposes on patients, families and communities. That’s why helping hospitals apply the best available science to treat all of the needs of their patients is a key part of the AHA’s behavioral health initiative.

We will continue to provide hospitals with the tools and resources necessary to promote the total health — physical and behavioral — of our patients and communities.

Related News Articles

Headline
Leaders of the House Energy and Commerce and Senate Finance committees today asked Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar to clarify by June 10 the…
Headline
The Campaign for Sustainable Rx Pricing, for which AHA is a founding member, today launched a petition and digital ad urging drug companies to suspend their “…
Headline
An estimated 9.5% of U.S. residents, or 30.7 million people, lacked health insurance when surveyed in the first six months of 2019, according to preliminary…
Perspective
On Tuesday, the Census Bureau reported that “a third of Americans now show signs of clinical anxiety or depression” due to the COVID-19 pandemic. It’s also…
Headline
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services yesterday released a fact sheet for state and local governments seeking Medicare, Medicaid or Children’s…
Headline
An annual report into death by several factors tied to mental health and wellbeing — otherwise referred to as “deaths of despair” — topped 150,000 in 2018. The…