The diamond cohort study- examining depressive symptoms in primary care [ 2007 - 2009 ]

Research Grant

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Researchers: Prof Jane Gunn (Principal investigator) ,  Dr Gail Gilchrist Prof Constance Pond Prof Helen Herrman Prof Kelsey Hegarty
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Brief description Depression is the single largest cause of disability for people in Australia. It is mainly managed in general practice-primary care, yet many people experiencing depression go unrecognised by their family doctor or general practitioner (GP). Some people, even when given treatment, remain depressed. Guides on how to manage depression have been mainly based upon people attending psychiatrists and hospitals. In addition, there have been a number of large studies overseas testing new ways of helping people with depression. Unfortunately, they do not seem any better than usual care by a GP. We are currently funded by the NHMRC for diamond 1 to follow 800 people to investigate the factors from the patient's and doctor's point of view that are likely to aid recovery from depression, and to detail the way in which people are cared for in the primary health care system. There is increasing research showing that depression is a chronic and relapsing condition and that a one-year follow-up, whilst longer than most previous studies, will capture only a small glimpse of the health service use and relapse patterns of the patients enrolled in our study. In this application, we request funding to continue to follow participants. diamond 2 aims to explore the patient characteristics and health service use patterns of patients who experience persistent major depression with patients who experience a single episode of depression within a 3-year period. We will use the data gathered to develop models that predict recovery-relapse-persistence of depression. Such models will enable us to develop guidelines and design interventions that better target those at risk of continuing and disabling illness. This work will be of international significance and has the potential to influence the entire primary mental health care system and contribute to substantial system change.

Funding Amount $AUD 570,886.38

Funding Scheme NHMRC Project Grants

Notes Standard Project Grant

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