A new research study has shown that depressed teens benefit more from team based care and that this treatment method will provide the best outcome. Teenagers who suffer from depression are at a much higher risk for self harm, suicide, substance abuse, and even violence. These adolescents need treatment that is effective. The research model used in the study showed that teens who have a depression care manager as well as a primary care physician were more likely to have a good outcome than teens who suffered from depression and did not have a care manager. The depression care manager is typically a nurse with specialized knowledge and training in this area. This manager is engaged with the teen on an active basis, ensuring that treatments are received and protocols and physician instructions are followed.
The study on depressed teens and team based care was performed by the Group Health Research Institute, and the study findings and results are important. Seattle Children’s Research Institute Center for Child Health investigator Laura P. Richardson, M.D., M.P.H. Explained “Proven treatments are available, including medications and psychotherapy. But most American teens with depression don’t get any treatment for it. We want to change that.” Richardson also stated “For adolescents, as for adults, depression can make it difficult to seek help and follow through. That’s why it’s so important that the care manager reached out to the teens regularly to see whether they were improving, and met weekly with a mental health specialist supervisor to review how the patients were responding to care.”