Suicide Rates Spike nearly 30% since 1999

According to a pair of reports issued on June 7 by the CDC, suicide rates have increased nearly 30% in the US since 1999.

“Jennifer Frost, M.D., medical director for the AAFP’s Health of the Public and Science Division, told AAFP News the increase in suicide rates in the United States is a concerning trend.

“While it is a complex issue, family physicians have a role in preventing suicide,” she said. “Family physicians should screen all adults for depression, and those who screen positive should receive further evaluation and appropriate treatment.”

That advice pertains, in particular, to the more than half of suicide victims who don’t have a known mental health condition. “One wonders how many of those individuals had been screened for depression,” Frost said.”  See the full AAFP article here.

Insight Patient Profile highlighted in Annals of Family Medicine

Vault is recognized in an article recently published in the Annals of Family Medicine. The article highlights the Insight Patient Profile, which was incorporated into Vault last year.  The Profile collects self-reported information that can be used to personalize care to improve outcomes such as, identity descriptors, health beliefs, personality types, learning styles, communication preferences, and health literacy levels.  It can be taken on its own or with other Vault tests and screens and is recommended for new patients and those with chronic conditions.

A Denver-based family practice, Westminster Medical Clinic (WMC), has developed robust training and educational material that can be used by providers when interpreting Profile results; a link to gain access to their resources is included on each Vault test report on the Insight tab.   WMC reports Insight data is already showing improvements in care and uncovering factors that influence patient health; the full article is available here.

American Academy of Pediatrics endorses universal adolescent depression screening for children age 12 and over

Last week, the AAP published updated medical guidelines on adolescent depression for the first time in 10 years to help equip pediatricians to identify and treat children suffering from depression.  Included in these guidelines are an endorsement for universal adolescent depression screening for those 12 and older.

Vault makes universal screening easy by offering both a patient and parent-reported pediatric depression test.  The test begins with a screen that continues into a full assessment and even a Suicidal Thoughts or Plans evaluation if the patient is meeting criteria.