Impact of parental depression on pharmacotherapy and psychotherapy amongst children and adolescents with depression diagnoses
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OBJECTIVE: Parental depression is considered amongst the greatest risk factors for the diagnosis of depression in children and adolescents. Less is known about how and to what extent parental depression influences their depressed children’s depression treatment. Building on Bronfenbrenner’s ecological model and Andersen’s model, this study aimed to assess the impact of parental depression on depressed children and adolescents’ depression treatment. DATA/STUDY POPULATION: Children and adolescents aged 3 to 17 diagnosed with depression in MarketScan Claims and Encounters Database (2010–2014) METHOD: Psychotherapy, pharmacotherapy, and combination treatment were examined. Study covariates were described. Chi-square tests with Bonferroni correction were conducted to examine the difference in study covariates between types of depression treatment. Generalized estimating equation models were used to examine the effect of parental depression on the likelihood of receiving depression treatment, controlling for study covariates, while accounting for the clustering of children and adolescents in the same household. RESULT: Children and adolescents with depressive parents were less likely to use psychotherapy (aOR: 0.80, 95% CI: (0.74, 0.86)), and more likely to use antidepressant (aOR: 1.41, 95% CI: (1.28, 1.56)) and combination treatment (aOR: 1.55, 95%CI: (1.43, 1.68)), compared to those without. Depressed children and adolescents living with depressed siblings in the same family were significantly less likely to use any depression treatment (aOR: 0.47, 95% CI: (0.41, 0.55)). CONCLUSION: The significant relationship between parental depression and their depressed children and adolescents’ treatment indicates that consideration should be given to parents’ decision-making and engagement in the treatment.