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Guide to Tools to Implement Primary Care Parental Depression Screening

Major depression affects one in 10 mothers and one in 20 fathers throughout the child rearing years. Pediatric health providers—often the clinicians who have the most contact with a parent during his or her child's early years—can help parents and children by detecting and intervening in parental depression. An Oct. 26 Web conference hosted by Medscape, "Screening for Maternal Depression: An Opportunity for Providers of Pediatric Healthcare," is now archived on the Medscape Web site. This CME/CE event features Ardis Olson, M.D., and Allen Dietrich, M.D., both of Dartmouth Medical School. The tools listed on this page, which support the implementation of parental screening in child health settings, have been developed and compiled from public access sources by The Clinicians Enhancing Child Health Network at Dartmouth Medical School, with support from The Commonwealth Fund. The Fund has published a complete step-by-step implementation guide for individual practitioners, practices, and organizations.

Other webcasts in this series on screening, include "Child Behavior Screening in Primary Care," on Medscape, and "Child Development: The Science and Practice of Catching Problems Early."

Training Tools

Parents' Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)—a list of FAQs for staff who will screen.

Fact Sheets—two educational fact sheets on the benefits of screening for parental depression.

Screening Tools

PHQ2—depression screener and diagnostic assessment sheet, provided with and without an introduction for parents

PHQ-9—depression screener and diagnostic assessment sheet

EPDS—Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale and score sheet

Family Psychosocial Screener and score sheet—contains the Rand brief depression screener

Summary table—summarizes screening tools

Reference Tools

Parenting During Depression: A Guide for Clinicians—this guide provides background information about mental health and tips on interviewing and counseling.

Parenting During Depression: A Guide for Clinicians, Pocket Version—using "keywords," this pocket version prompts providers with interview and counseling techniques. A favorite among providers.
Educational Tools

Lower Your Stress: Stress and Parenting—developed by Journey Works, this brochure lists activities to reduce stress. To order: call 800-775-1998

Guide for Parents: When Times Are Tough—a comprehensive brochure that gives parents background on depression, how it impacts their child, and a list of changes a child make through each stage of his/her life.

Can a Depressed Parent Be a Good Parent?—this brochure includes background about depression, and lists the several types of depression and communication tools for discussing depression with family members.

Tips on Parenting for Mothers with Depression—a one-page handout from the National Mental Health Association

Facts About Depression (poster)

What to Do When You Feel Blue... (poster)

Family Mental Health Is Spoken Here (poster)

Feeling Blue (poster)
Web Tools

National Institutes of Health
National Institute of Mental Health
National Mental Health Organization
National Alliance for the Mentally Ill
American Academy of Pediatrics
American Psychiatric Association

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