A new study suggests training pediatric primary care providers to screen and assess depression and suicide risk in adolescent patients will improve care.

Researchers discovered additional training improved pediatrician’s confidence and knowledge of these conditions and led to increased frequency of screenings for this critical patient population.

The study, to be published in a forthcoming issue of Academic Pediatrics, demonstrates that screening by pediatricians is an effective tool for improving recognition of adolescent depression.

Sadly, many cases of adolescent depression are not recognized, sometimes leading to deadly consequences. Because only 50% of adolescent depression cases are identified and only 38% of diagnosed patients receive treatment, professional guidelines by the American Academy of Pediatrics and the United States Preventive Task Force both recommend primary care screening of the condition.

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