Response to NHS Information Centre report on the rise of antidepressant prescriptions

Release Date: 31 July 2012

Source: Mental Health Foundation

Country: United Kingdom

Dr Andrew McCulloch, Chief Executive of the Mental Health Foundation responds to NHS Information Centre report indicating that  antidepressant prescriptions account for largest annual rise in items dispensed in the community:

“We are not surprised by this increase. Depression is one of the most common mental illnesses, and people may be feeling particularly depressed or anxious at a time of economic recession, job insecurity and high levels of debt.  

But it also suggests that doctors may just be relying on antidepressant prescribing rather than offering patients alternative evidence-based interventions such as psychological therapies or exercise prescriptions. We must make sure that options like these are widely available in every part of the country.

We also need to look at any regional variations to ensure that best prescribing practice is followed throughout the country.”