Strong Behavioral Health to Host Two Free Depression Screenings, Free Community Seminar on Depression

September 18, 1998

On Thursday, October 8, Strong Behavioral Health will join hospitals and clinics throughout the nation in hosting free depression screenings as part of National Depression Screening Day.

More than 15 million American adults, adolescents, and children suffer from depressive illness annually, according to the National Institute of Mental Health. Common symptoms of depression include feelings of hopelessness, worthlessness, restlessness, irritability, changes in sleep or appetite, loss of energy, and/or thoughts of death or suicide. Manic-depressive illness includes feelings of euphoria or agitation.

"If the pleasure has gone out of your life, if you feel sad and empty, or if you have trouble sleeping or eating, you may have clinical depression," says Michael R. Privitera, M.D., director of the University of Rochester’s Mood Disorders Center and coordinator of the October 8 screenings. "Clinical depression is an illness, not a weakness or character flaw as many people perceive it to be. In most cases, depression can be treated effectively. The first step to treatment is seeing a mental health clinician, which is what we hope this special screening day will accomplish for many people suffering unnecessarily from depressive illness."

Two screenings are scheduled on October 8 -- one at noon at Highland Hospital’s Lobby Conference room and the other at 6:00 p.m. at Strong Memorial Hospital Behavioral Health, room 1-9041. The two hour screenings involve completing a questionnaire, viewing an educational talk on depression, and discussing the results of the questionnaire privately and confidentially with a trained professional. Based on the questionnaire responses and the one-on-one talk, clinicians will offer suggestions or if necessary, make referrals for further evaluation or treatment. The screenings are open to adults, adolescents, and children. Interpretive services for the hearing impaired will also be available.

Participants attending the Highland Hospital screening may park in the ramp garage; those attending the screening at Strong should park in the visitors’ parking lot on Crittenden Boulevard. Pre-registration is not required, but encouraged. Please call (716) 275-3565 for more information.

Depression Across the Life Span

In conjunction with the depression screenings, Strong Behavioral Health, Highland Hospital, and the Mental Health Association will host a free community seminar on Tuesday, October 6 from 5:30 p.m. – 9:30 p.m. entitled "Depression Across the Life Span." The seminar will be held at the School of the Arts, 45 Prince Street and will feature four UR faculty members who will address child/adolescent depression, geriatric depression, suicide and depression, and addictions and depression. Seating is limited and may be reserved by calling 325-3145.

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