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Depression Care Recognition Program

Recognition for demonstrating high levels of Depression care

Major depression can cause pain, mental suffering and disability, and even lead to death. Yet depression is often not detected by primary care doctors, and most patients who are diagnosed do not improve significantly in the year following detection. As a result, many drop out of treatment too soon or stay on ineffective medication.

To encourage more effective diagnosis and treatment, BTE worked with the Buyers Health Care Action Group to create a depression care program. Based on the DIAMOND collaborative care project in Minnesota, it uses the PHQ-9 tool, a nine-item depression scale questionnaire aimed at helping primary care physicians and behavioral specialists diagnose, select and monitor treatment. The tool helps them assess symptoms and functional impairment to make a diagnosis, and derive a severity score to help in selecting and monitoring treatment.

To earn Recognition, clinicians must meet benchmarks on measures such as:

  • PHQ-9 assessment tool use
  • Relative improvement of symptoms
  • Remission rate

Those who do will help patients have more depression-free days, fewer suicidal thoughts and a higher quality of life.

Note: This program will be operational by 2011.

Choose your path to Recognition