Recognition of depression in people of different cultures

February 2017

General Practitioners

Country of origin: Sweden

Many minority group patients who attend primary health care are depressed. To identify a depressive state when GPs see patients from other cultures than their own can be difficult because of cultural and gender differences in expressions and problems of communication. The aim of a recent study was to explore and analyse how GPs think and deliberate when seeing and treating patients from foreign countries who display potential depressive features.

The data were collected in focus groups and through individual interviews with GPs in northern Sweden and analysed by qualitative content analysis.

In the analysis three themes, based on various categories, emerged; "Realizing the background", "Struggling for clarity" and "Optimizing management". Patients' early life events of importance were often unknown which blurred the accuracy. Reactions to trauma, cultural frictions and conflicts between the new and old gender norms made the diagnostic process difficult. The patient-doctor encounter comprised misconceptions, and social roles in the meetings were sometimes confused. GPs based their judgement mainly on clinical intuition and the established classification of depressive disorders was discussed. Tools for management and adequate action were diffuse.

The report concludes that dialogue about patients' illness narratives and social context are crucial. There is a need for tools for multicultural, general practice care in the depressive spectrum. It is also essential to be aware of GPs' own conceptions in order to avoid stereotypes and not to under- or overestimate the occurrence of depressive symptoms

Resources

Leaflet on Protecting Children from Measles July 2017 A leaflet on the MMR vaccination has been issued Welsh Assembly Government. The leaflet contains sections on who is at...
Dignity In The Care Of Older People July 2017 Dignity has become a central concern in UK health policy in relation to older and vulnerable people. The empirical and...
Carbon Monoxide: Are You At Risk? July 2017 The Department of Health has issued information for patients on the dangers of carbon monoxide. It advises people with...
Guide to Patient and Public Involvement in Urgent Care July 2017 The NHS Centre for Involvement has produced a guide for commissioners and providers on implementing an effective system of...
Hepatitis C Quick Reference Guide For Primary Care July 2017 The Department of Health has produced a single sheet of concise information and good practice advice about hepatitis C...
CDC Online Newsroom July 2017 The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has an online newsroom that offers a one-stop shop for anyone seeking...
Website Promises Everything You Wanted To Know About Sex July 2017 SexualHealthConnection.com, an online resource uniquely focused on providing women specific clinical information and...
Online tool to help GPs fight kidney disease July 2017 An online resource to tackle chronic kidney disease (CKD) by improving understanding of the condition and progress made in...
RCGP e-Learning Resource for all NHS Family Doctors July 2017 e-GP, an innovative joint project between the RCGP and e-Learning for Healthcare (e-LfH), is available to all NHS GPs. It...
Authoritative Health Sciences Website July 2017 Health Sciences Online is a website where anyone can search for and find more than 50,000 courses, references, guidelines,...
Search by Keyword