Mathews Journal of Nursing and Health Care


Previous Issues Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2021

Improving Depression Screening Through Utilization of a Depression Screening Protocol in Primary Care

Fredricka Marsh, DNP, APRN, FNP, MSN

University of Alabama, Capstone College of Nursing, USA

Corresponding Author: Fredricka Marsh, Capstone College of Nursing, University of Alabama, USA, E-mail: [email protected]

Received Date: May 22, 2021

Published Date: September 24, 2021

Copyright: Marsh F. © (2021). This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

Citation: Marsh F. (2021). Improving Depression Screening Through Utilization of a Depression Screening Protocol in Primary Care. Mathews J Nurs. 3(1):04.


The purpose of this Quality Improvement (QI) project was to implement an evidence-based protocol focused on consistent utilization of an evidence-based depression screening tool using the United States Preventive Service Task Force (USPSTF) and the Patient Health Questionnaire-9 (PHQ-9), among patients 18 to 75 years of age who receive care in a primary care setting. A retrospective chart review was conducted two weeks prior to implementation of the PHQ-9 depression screening tool, 100 randomly selected patient charts were selected by reviewing every third patient chart that met the criteria of 18 to 75 years of age. Frequencies and percentages were calculated and separated by pre- and post-implementation (before and after) implementation of the evidence-based protocol, the PHQ-9, for age, race, and gender. The findings suggest the mean of the PHQ-9 score was significantly higher in the post-implementation categories than in the pre- implementation categories in the proportion of patients 18 to 75 years of age who received the depression screening tool, PHQ-9. Therefore, utilizing a depression screening protocol will be a guide for providers to consistently assess patients for depression and promote adequate diagnosing and early interventions and treatment.

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