Task Force recommends screening adolescents for depression
The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force today issued a final recommendation that primary care clinicians screen all adolescents aged 12 to 18 for major depressive disorder. The panel said the screening should be implemented with adequate systems in place to ensure accurate diagnosis, effective treatment and appropriate follow-up. It assigned a "B" grade to the recommendation, meaning all copays and deductibles for the screenings would be waived under the Affordable Care Act. The new recommendation reaffirms a 2009 recommendation, but removes the mention of specific therapies in recognition of decreased concern over the harms of pharmacotherapy in adolescents when they are adequately monitored.