Going to scale: Re-engineering systems for primary care treatment of depression

Allen J. Dietrich, Thomas E. Oxman, John W. Williams, Kurt Kroenke, H. Charles Schulberg, Martha Bruce, Sheila L. Barry

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

68 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND: Recent trials have shown improved depression outcomes with chronic care models. We report the methods of a project that assesses the sustainability and transportability of a chronic care model for depression and change strategy. METHODS: In a randomized controlled trial (RCT), a clinical model for depression was implemented through a strategy supporting practice change. The clinical model is evidence based. The change strategy relies on established quality improvement programs and is informed by diffusion of innovations theory. Evaluation will address patient outcomes, as well as process of care and process of change. RESULTS: Five medical groups and health plans are participating in the trial. The RCT involves 180 clinicians in 60 practices. All practices assigned to the clinical model have implemented it. Participating organizations have the potential to disseminate this clinical model of care to 700 practices and 1,700 clinicians. CONCLUSIONS: It is feasible to implement the clinical model and change strategy in diverse practices. Follow-up evaluation will determine the impact, sustainability, and potential for dissemination. Materials are available through http://www.depression-primarycare.org; more in-depth descriptions of the clinical model and change strategy are available in the online-only appendixes to this article.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)301-304
Number of pages4
JournalAnnals of Family Medicine
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 1 2004


  • Depression
  • Depressive disorder
  • Health services research, program evaluation
  • Information dissemination
  • Primary health care
  • Randomized controlled trials

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Family Practice

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    Dietrich, A. J., Oxman, T. E., Williams, J. W., Kroenke, K., Schulberg, H. C., Bruce, M., & Barry, S. L. (2004). Going to scale: Re-engineering systems for primary care treatment of depression. Annals of Family Medicine, 2(4), 301-304. https://doi.org/10.1370/afm.102