Most with depression face discrimination

  • Deborah Condon

Almost eight in 10 people with depression have experienced some form of discrimination, a study has shown.

Scientists questioned 1,082 people with depression in 35 countries about their experiences. Some 79% admitted they had experienced discrimination, with one in three stating they had been shunned or avoided by others because of their illness.

One in four said they had not applied for jobs because they felt they would be discriminated against. Although almost half of those who believed they would be discriminated against in their jobs because of their depression, were not.

At least seven in 10 people with the condition said they wanted to hide it from others.

According to lead researcher, Prof Graham Thornicroft of King's College London, this is the first study to investigate ‘the actual experiences of discrimination in a large, global sample of people with depression'.

"Our findings show that discrimination related to depression is widespread, and almost certainly acts as a barrier to an active social life and having a fair chance to get and keep a job for people with depression," he said.

Details of these findings are published in the medical journal, The Lancet.

It is estimated that some 280,000 people have depression in Ireland at any one time. For more information, see our Depression Clinic here

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