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Part of: Mental Health and Illness

Related to: Ill Health and Disability, Postnatal Depression, Self-Harm, Suicide and Mortality of Undetermined Intent, Guardianship under the 1983 Mental Health ActWellbeing, Emotional Health and Wellbeing of Children and Young People, People with Multiple Needs, Socio-economic Inequality, Students, Welfare Reform, Alcohol, Substance Misuse, Carers, Child Poverty, Dementia, Domestic Abuse, Employment and Economic Activity, Child Health and Wellbeing Survey

Key Facts

  • It is estimated that in UK general practices, 50% of attending patients with depressive and anxiety disorders do not have their symptoms recognised.

  • In B&NES during the financial year 2012/13, 10.3% of respondents to the General Practice survey answered "moderately anxious or depressed", "severely anxious or depressed" or "extremely anxious or depressed" to the question "What is the state of your health today?".

  • There were 8,931 people aged 18 years and over in 2012/13 (financial year) registered with depression in GP practises in B&NES, 5.6% of the over 18 year old registered GP population.
  • Rates of depressive disorders in B&NES are higher for women
  • Public Health England has estimated that 3.3% of children and young people aged 5-16 years in Bath and North East Somerset in 2013 had an emotional disorder (anxiety disorders and depression). This is similar to the 2013 estimates for England (3.7%) and the South West (3.5%). 

Definitions

Depression affects people in different ways and can cause a wide variety of symptoms. They range from lasting feelings of sadness and hopelessness, to losing interest in the things. Many people with depression also have symptoms of anxiety . There can be physical symptoms too, such as trouble sleeping and loss of apetite. The severity of the symptoms can vary: mild depression may present as constantly low mood whereas at its most severe it can result in suicide 1.

  • Anxiety disorders can cause considerable distress, affect day to day functioning and are often chronic (long term) in nature. Both panic disorder and generalised anxiety disorder, are one subtype of several anxiety disorders, including 2:
  •  generalised anxiety disorder (GAD)
  • panic disorder (with or without agoraphobia)
  • post traumatic stress disorder
  • obsessive compulsive disorder
  • various phobias (e.g. of spiders or social situations)

In some instances it is difficult to distinguish the different disorders, and it is common for more than one to ocur at once, with or without depression.

What does the data say?

UK

It is estimated that in UK general practices, 50% of attending patients with depressive and anxiety disorders do not have their symptoms recognised. 3

The prevalence of depression and anxiety among patients responding to a national General Practice survey across England during the financial year 2012/13, was 12.0% (results were weighted for known factors such as age). This reflects the percentage of respondents who answered "moderately anxious or depressed", "severely anxious or depressed" or "extremely anxious or depressed" to the question "What is the state of your health today?". 4

A UK study in 2009 indicated that the incidence of depression (new cases per head of population) was around 2.5% 5, although estimates from other epidemiological studies have suggested incidence rates of up to 8.8%. In the financial year 2012/13 across England, 0.7% of adults were given a new diagnosis of depression, considerably less than the estimated incidence from studies. For individual practices, the incidence ranged from 0 to 12.1%. 6

Bath and North East Somerset

There were 8,931 people aged 18 years and over in 2012/13 (financial year) registered with depression in GP practises in B&NES. This is 5.6% of the over 18 year old registered GP population in B&NES, slightly lower than the rate for England, 5.8%. 7

There were 11,995 people in 2012/13 (financial year) registered with depression according to the Depression 1 Indicator in GP practises in B&NES. This is 6.1% of the registered GP population in B&NES, lower than the rate for England, 7.3%. 8

For more up to date prevalence figures for depression recorded as part of the NHS Quality and Outcomes Framework (QOF), see the Ill Health and Disability section. 

The prevalence of depression and anxiety among the GP registered population in B&NES and England is however likely to be higher as indicated by the results of a General Practice survey. In B&NES during the financial year 2012/13, 10.3% (results were weighted for known factors such as age) of respondents to the General Practice survey answered "moderately anxious or depressed", "severely anxious or depressed" or "extremely anxious or depressed" to the question "What is the state of your health today?". 9

In B&NES in the financial year 2012/13, 1.1% of adults were given a new diagnosis of depression. 10

Gender and age - Results show that rates of depressive disorders in B&NES are higher for females with a general increase with age with a plateau at about 35 to 64, a slight drop and then a large increase in older age to a peak of 970 per 10,000 for females and 510 for males per 10,000 in the 85+ age group11

Children and Young People 12

Using the prevalence from the ONS 2004 Mental health of children and young people in Great Britain survey, adjusting for age, sex and socio-economic classification and mid-year population estimates, Public Health England has estimated that 3.3% of children and young people aged 5-16 years in Bath and North East Somerset in 2013 had an emotional disorder (anxiety disorders and depression). This is similar to the 2013 estimates for England (3.7%) and the South West (3.5%). 

What does the community say?

Child Health and Wellbeing Survey

For the results of the Child Health and Wellbeing Survey see the Child Health and Wellbeing Survey section.

Are we meeting the needs?

Assessments of depression severity - NICE guidelines state that an assessment of severity in patients with depression is essential to decide on appropriate interventions and improve the quality of care. An assessment of severity as close as possible to the time of diagnosis enables a discussion with the patient about relevant treatment and options, guided by the stepped care model of depression described in the NICE clinical guidelines. 13

In those patients in B&NES with a new diagnosis of depression, recorded between 1st April 2011 to 31st March 2012, 95.1% of patients had had an assessment of severity at the time of diagnosis using an assessment tool validated for use in primary care. This is significantly higher than England with 90.6%. 14