Real world study shows depression screening improves patient care after breast cancer diagnosis
23 March 2022
- Evidence-based guidelines from various oncology societies recommend routine depression screening in cancer patients, yet implementing a sustainable screening program can be difficult, and frequently the results from RCTs are difficult to replicate in real world clinical practice
- A tailored implementation strategy, which included education about screening throughout the study for physicians and nurses, with support to help assess the best way to add depression screening to the patient’s care, was evaluated against an education strategy, where physicians and nurses received general education on the screening program at the start of the study
- More patients in the tailored implementation group vs. the education-only group received a referral for depression screening (7.9% vs. 0.1%)
- “Overall, tailored implementation strategies resulted in a much greater proportion of [patients with breast cancer] screened for depression and, if needed, appropriately referred for behavioral health care… At our tailored strategy sites, 80% of eligible patients were offered screening and of those who needed additional care, 94% received an appropriate referral.”
Erin E. Hahn, PhD, MPH, researcher at Kaiser Permanente Southern California
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