Elements of appropriate general management

  • Patient should be informed about the medical model of depression (e.g. depression as a serious disorder, a disorder comparable to other disorders in medicine, depression as treatable)
  • Relatives should be involved, contingent on the patient’s permission
  • Discussion of lifestyle issues, such as daily routine, social supports, and substance misuse
  • Issue sick certificates only if it is unavoidable e.g. in severe depression. The loss of the structure of working life can have negative impact on depressive symptoms in many patients
  • Make a follow-up appointment for two weeks later, sooner if side effects of antidepressants are anticipated