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Home > Can general practice help address youth mental health? A retrospective cross-sectional study in Dublin's south inner city.

Connolly, D and Leahy, D and Bury, Gerard and Gavin, B and McNicholas, F and Meagher, D and O'Kelly, FD and Wiehe, P and Cullen, Walter (2012) Can general practice help address youth mental health? A retrospective cross-sectional study in Dublin's south inner city. Early Intervention in Psychiatry, 6, (3), pp. 332-340. doi: 10.1111/j.1751-7893.2012.00367.x.

AIMS: With general practice potentially having an important role in early intervention of mental and substance use disorders among young people, we aim to explore this issue by determining the prevalence of psychological problems and general practice/health service utilization among young people attending general practice.

METHODS: A retrospective cross-sectional study of patients attending three general practices in Dublin city.

RESULTS: Among a sample of young people (mostly women, 44% general medical services (GMS) eligible), we observed considerable contact with general practice, both lifetime and for the 2 years of the study. The mean consultation rate was 3.9 consultations in 2 years and psychosocial issues (most commonly stress/anxiety and depression) were documented in 35% of cases. Identification of psychosocial issues was associated with GMS eligibility, three or more doctor consultations, and documentation of smoking and drinking status.

CONCLUSIONS: Psychosocial issues are common among young people attending general practice and more work on their epidemiology and further identification in general practice are advocated.


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