Culturally adapted depression education and engagement in treatment among Hispanics in primary care: Outcomes from a pilot feasibility study

Katherine Sanchez, Michael O. Killian, Brittany H. Eghaneyan, Leopoldo J. Cabassa, Madhukar H. Trivedi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Background: Low use of anti-depressant medication, poor doctor-patient communication, and persistent stigma are key barriers to the treatment of depression in Hispanics. Common concerns include fears about the addictive and harmful properties of antidepressants, worries about taking too many pills, and the stigma attached to taking medications and seeking mental health treatments. In 2014, the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) funded the Depression Screening and Education: Options to Reduce Barriers to Treatment (DESEO) project to implement an education intervention designed to increase disease literacy and dispel myths about depression and its treatment among Hispanic patients thus reducing stigma and increasing treatment engagement. Methods: The DESEO study utilized a one-group pretest-posttest design to assess the effects a culturally-adapted Depression Education Intervention's (DEI) on depression knowledge, stigma, and engagement in treatment in a sample of 350 Hispanic primary care patients with depression. The DEI utilized a fotonovela, a health education tool available in English and Spanish that uses posed photographs, captions, and soap opera narratives to raise awareness about depression and depression treatments. Results: Participants reported significant decreases in depression symptoms and reported stigma about mental health care. Additionally, participants reported increased knowledge of depression yet greater negative perceptions about antidepressant medication. Finally, 89.5% of participants reported entering some form of treatment at follow-up. Conclusions: Culturally adapted depression education shows promise in increasing understanding of depression, decreasing stigma, and increasing treatment engagement among Hispanic patients in a community-based health center. Results have implications for practice in addressing common concerns about depression treatments which include fears about the addictive and harmful properties of antidepressants, worries about taking too many pills, and the stigma attached to taking psychotropic medications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number140
JournalBMC Family Practice
Volume20
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 21 2019

Keywords

  • Depression
  • Education, Hispanics
  • Fotonovela
  • Primary care
  • Stigma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Family Practice

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