Year: 2013 Source: Social Work in Mental Health.(2011).9(5):303-318. DOI: 10.1080/15332985.2011.581129 SIEC No: 20130334

This study examines whether a history of treatment differentiates levels of general mental and physical functioning among individuals with lifetime depressive disorder, with and without a history of suicide attempt. We also examine whether functioning varies treatment type (outpatient psychotherapy, pharmacologic, pharmacologic and outpatient psychotherapy, or inpatient treatment). Using the 2001-2002 National Epidemiologic Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions (NESARC), individuals meeting criteria for depression, with and without a history of suicide attempt, who received past treatment were included. No type of treatment was associated with better mental or physical functioning among attempters. Only outpatient psychotherapy was associated with higher physical and mental functioning among non-attempters. Given the poor rates of treatment adherence among depressed suicide attempters, long-term improvement in physical and mental health functioning is difficult to achieve. Treatment engagement should be a major focus of work with this population.