In 2004, four community health centers on Cape Cod, Mass., began screening their patients for depression and addictions. Patients were originally referred elsewhere for treatment, but the centers later hired social workers and a psychiatrist and began mental health treatment themselves.
This project was part of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Local Funding Partnerships program. The program helps local organizations across the country offer a wide range of health services and interventions in collaboration with community foundations, corporate grantmakers and other local funders.
The four health centers screened 16,161 patients for depression and addictions over the grant period.
The number of patients who screened positive but failed to pursue treatment declined substantially after the centers began offering mental health treatment.
The proportion of people who screened positive for depression declined over the course of the project.