Comparing the Geriatric Depression Scale, Minimum Data Set, and primary care provider diagnosis for depression in rural nursing home residents

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Peer Reviewed


Publication Date


NLM Title Abbreviation

J Am Psychiatr Nurses Assoc

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Journal of the American Psychiatric Nurses Association

DOI of Published Version


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End Page



BACKGROUND: Depression has a substantial negative impact on quality of life. Underdiagnosis and undertreatment of depression are major problems in nursing home residents. OBJECTIVES: This study sought to determine the prevalence of depression among older adults in nursing homes in rural Iowa using the Geriatric Depression Scale (GDS), Minimum Data Set (MDS), and primary care provider (PCP) depression diagnosis. DESIGN: This is a secondary analysis of data collected from 279 randomly selected residents of nursing homes in rural Iowa. RESULTS: The prevalence of depression based on the GDS (score of 6 or greater) was 37.3%, the MDS was 21.3%, and the PCP depression diagnosis was 39.1%. CONCLUSION: There was only chance agreement in identifying depression among the measures. The overall prevalence of depression (as indicated by a positive depression marker in any group) was 67.1%, suggesting depression continues to be a problematic clinical and quality-of-life issue in rural nursing homes.


Depression -- Diagnosis -- In Old Age, Nursing Home Patients -- Psychosocial Factors, Nursing Homes, Primary Health Care, Aged, Aged, 80 and Over, Cluster Sample, Female, Funding Source, Geriatric Depression Scale, Iowa, Kappa Statistic, Male, Minimum Data Set, Prevalence, Psychological Tests, Random Sample, Rural Areas, Scales, Secondary Analysis, Sensitivity and Specificity, Sex Factors, Human

Published Article/Book Citation

Journal of the American Psychiatric Nurses Association, 11:5 (2005) pp.269-275. DOI:10.1177/1078390305281345.

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