Quote from BSNtobe2009
I personally, had the privilege of having a Clinical Psychologist as a professor in college. He strongly feels that unless someone is a patient in a hospital setting, the medical doctors of any type should not be permitted to prescribe psychological drugs and these should be strictly prescribed by a Psychiatrist, who has the additional training and can render an opinion if depression really and truly exists.
He also feels that a person should not be permitted to receive a prescription for anti-depressants, initially, without undergoing one-on-one therapy, because it's like treating the symptoms and never treating the disease...how do you expect the disease to ever go away?
I have heard of children as young as 4 and 5 being on anti-depressants, and I have a friend who has a daughter that is 8 years old, that is on them. Want to know why? My friend claims that her daughter is still traumatized by the fact her father ran out on them...she was TWO when this happened...she is traumatized by the fact her mother won't shut up about it over the years and has always kept the drama going and that is what is upsetting her daughter.
I think we are in a society that over-drugs children.
Here is the flaw with that theory.
In the real world, the only time that someone qualifies for inpatient treatment for depression (due to insurance coverage) is 1) if they are suicidal or 2) have attempted suicide. So, what this psychologist is really saying is that he/she is willing to wait until there is a CRISIS...possibly an actual suicide attempt....for depressed persons to receive relief. I would argue the therapeutic benefit of that idea.
While I agree that in a perfect world it would be best for a psychiatrist to adjust meds all the time in an inpatient setting, this is just not practical. As far as other medical personnel (such as PCP's) writing for depression meds, again, this has to do with real world problems. In my area, for example, it is COMMON for new patients to need to wait anywhere from 3 to 6 months for an initial appointment with a psychiatrist. In fact, there is a nationwide shortage of psychiatrists atm. The good ones are telling corps to kiss off and starting their own practices because they don't have to take call or holiday hours AND are able to take the time to treat patients appropriately. Hospitals/clinics are losing talented psychiatrists because they are trying to force patient quotas. That is extremely difficult to do in psychiatry, at least if the provider is actually trying to do a good job with the patient and prevent them from relapsing.
I do agree, however, that counseling is an important part of the treatment process. And, if you REALLY want to try to make treatment successful, you would include not only individual therapy for the depressed person but also group therapy and family therapy. Most people never get or seek that level of aftercare though. Again because they can't afford it or insurance doesn't cover it.