The Prevalence and Correlates of Workplace Depression in the National Comorbidity Survey Replication

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Objective:To review evidence on the workplace prevalence and correlates of major depressive episodes, with a particular focus on the National Comorbidity Survey Replication, the most recent national survey to focus on these issues.Method:Nationally representative survey of Diagnostic and Statistical Manual, 4th Revision Mental Disorders.Results:A total of 6.4% of employed National Comorbidity Survey Replication respondents had 12-month major depressive disorder. An additional 1.1% had major depressive episodes due to bipolar disorder or mania–hypomania. Only about half of depressed workers received treatment. Fewer than half of treated workers received care consistent with published treatment guidelines.Conclusions:Depression disease management programs can have a positive return-on-investment from the employer perspective, but only when they are based on best practices. Given the generally low depression treatment quality documented here, treatment quality guarantees are needed before expanding workplace depression screening, outreach, and treatment programs.

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