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Major Depressive Disorder (MDD)

Background

MDD is a serious public health problem in the Department of Defense (DoD), the Veteran Health Administration (VHA) health care systems and in the nation at large; hence, timely diagnosis and effective treatment is an important responsibility of health care providers. About ten to fifteen percent of all primary care patients have MDD, easily making it perhaps the most common disorder that primary care providers see in their practices (Simon, 1999). Research now shows that a range of cost-effective treatments is feasible and efficacious in both the primary care and specialty mental health care settings (Davidson, 1999). Effective treatment can reduce and/or eliminate depression symptoms (Mulrow, 1998), improve health-related quality of life, (Heiligenstein, 1995), and, in some research, even improve occupational performance and productivity among those with MDD (Mintz, 1992). Other research has shown that guideline-driven improvements in the quality of depression care can result in improved symptoms and symptom-related quality of life for those affected (Katon, 1995).

In 2000, the Veterans Administration (VA) and the Department of Defense (DoD) developed a clinical practice guideline designed to assist clinicians evaluate and manage adult patients with depression. In 2009 the guideline was updated: VA/DoD Clinical Practice Guideline for Management of Major Depressive Disorder in Adults, May 09.

The MDD CPG is one of the supporting guidelines for the DoD/VA Clinical Practice Guideline for Post-Deployment Health Evaluation and Management (PDH-CPG), Dec 01, which was developed to assist primary care providers in evaluating and providing care for individuals with potentially deployment-related health concerns and conditions.

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Clinical Guidance

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Implementation Guidelines

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Implementation Tools

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Other Related Information

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Education and Training

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