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Burden of Treatment-resistant Depression in Ontario

Client: imshealth | brogan

Project ID: P2016-008 / 2018 0970 105 000

Research Question/Objectives: Refractory depression, also called treatment-resistant depression (TRD), is commonly encountered by mental health professionals, even in the context of treatment with appropriate anti-depressants. Up to two thirds of patients with major unipolar depression will not respond to the first medication prescribed and 10 – 33% will not respond to multiple interventions. General consensus is emerging that unipolar major depression is considered resistant or refractory when at least two trials with anti-depressants fail to produce a significant clinical improvement.

Primary objective: To measure the economic burden (direct costs) of TRD to the Ontario health care system compared to major depressive disorder (non-TRD) patient population and the general population.

Secondary objectives:

  • To describe the Ontario TRD patient population in terms of clinical and demographic characteristics
  • To quantify the depression-related health care resource utilization (HCRU) of TRD patients in Ontario compared to the non-TRD patient population and to the general population
  • To measure incremental HCRU and incremental costs of TRD patients by the number of anti-depressant failures
  • To determine the average number of failed anti-depressant lines before MDD patients progress to an electroconvulsive therapy (ETC).