Antidepressant Prescribing Doubles Since Advent of IAPT

this makes it difficult to believe that GP’s see IAPT as a credible alternative to antidepressants. GP’s welcome the opportunity to refer depressed/anxious patients anywhere (including IAPT), as they get a breather from them, as they struggle to cope with the deluge of patients with physical problems.

On today’s Radio 4, The President of the Royal College of General Practitioners was sanguine about the increased prescribing, citing the benefits of antidepressants. But the evidence that they make a real world difference that lasts is questionable, see link below:

No matter, a rep from the Royal College of Psychiatry (RCP), also on Radio 4 today responded to the doubling of antidepressants, in the last decade, by saying that they should not be the ‘go to’ response to psychological debility. He should perhaps have a chat with the RCGP President! He suggests that instead there should be increased funding for ‘talking therapies’. But he seems unaware that the main provider of talking therapies, IAPT, has never been subjected to independently funded evaluation. The RCP would not tolerate this for claims of the efficacy of a drug, why do they tolerate it for the effectiveness of IAPT? It seems that in the current zeitgeist, being in favour of talking therapies is on a par with being in favour of peace, no one can doubt its’ value. But my study of 90 clients going through IAPT evaluated with a standardised diagnostic interview suggests that only the tip of the iceberg recover, see link below:

Dr Mike Scott

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