a1 Institute of Psychiatry, Bologna University, Bologna, Italy
a2 Psychology Department, Milano-Bicocca University, Milan, Italy
a3 Section of Primary Care Mental Health Service and Population Research Department, Institute of Psychiatry at King's College London, London SE5 8AF, UK
Aims. To validate the Italian version of the ‘depression attitude questionnaire’ (DAQ), to assess its psychometric properties and to evaluate the primary care physicians' (PCPs) opinion and attitude towards depression.
Methods. An Italian version of the DAQ was created and then administered to a representative sample of PCPs working in the Emilia-Romagna region.
Results. The findings derived from the Italian version of the DAQ indicated a three-factor solution (professional confidence, negative viewpoint and biological stance), broadly similar to previous studies and with acceptable fit indices. Our results showed that the PCPs consider depression as an increasingly important issue for their daily clinical practice. A large majority of them believed in the effectiveness of antidepressants and considered psychopharmacological treatment as appropriate for the PCPs to undertake. However, most PCP respondents thought that psychotherapy should be left to the specialists. Our findings suggest a prevalent orientation to the biochemical aspects of depression and the use of antidepressant treatment.
Conclusions. The PCPs' attitude and opinion towards depression is an important aspect of their understanding and response to this common and disabling condition. The Italian version of the DAQ appears to be an appropriate and useful instrument to assist the understanding of the PCPs' views and potential need for further professional development.
(Received January 12 2012)
(Revised March 22 2012)
(Accepted April 03 2012)
(Online publication May 08 2012)