Depression among nursing home residents often goes unrecognized by Staff. Not surprising in that staff are not trained to recognize its symptoms. The Journal of the American Medical Association “found that patients who were depressed had a 59 percent greater chance of dying over the year.” And although the JAMA study did not address the issue, untreated depression, as any strong emotion, is “contagious” and impacts other residents. Another article describes that only, “42.9% of the subjects with acute major depression were diagnosed by their attending physicians as depressive…” according to one study, “One reason for this is that physicians in nursing homes spend only a short time, around 5 to 10 minutes a month, with patients…” Also, doctors often attribute its appearance as a “normal” part of aging.
According to a study below only, “42.9% of the subjects with acute major depression were diagnosed by their attending physicians as depressive.” The reason is, according to another study, “physicians in nursing homes spend only a short time, around 5 to 10 minutes a month, with patients… More important, though, is that most physicians have the misconception that depression is a normal part of aging. They don’t see it as abnormal, so they don’t treat it.”
The articles selected for inclusion are mostly “non-technical” (one appeared in the NY Times) although some are more difficult but worth the reading. They represent an introduction to this dangerous disorder with impact on life quality and longevity of your residents, and the stability of your population.