Depression Screening Criticized in CMAJ

The Canadian Medical Association Journal has run an interesting review of the evidence surrounding depression screening. Despite the massive machinery promoting people getting tested for depression that’s being run by corporations and mental health organizations, the researchers found there’s no science supporting any of it:

The systematic review for this guideline did not find any studies evaluating the benefits of screening the average-risk population for depression in primary care settings.

The researchers also found that no one had ever studied the damage that screening can do:

The systematic review for the current guideline did not identify any eligible studies measuring the harms of screening for depression. Potential harms of screening include false-positive diagnoses, with subsequent unnecessary treatment; adverse effects of medical therapy among people correctly identified as having depression; and the consequences of labelling and stigma.