News Release

REF NO.: 112

SUBJECT: Research paper examines depression in three cities in Pakistan

DATE: February 14, 2007

A paper authored by two Memorial University faculty members will be published Feb. 14 in PLoS one, the Journal of Public Library of Sciences. Drs. Amin A. Muhammad Gadit and Gerry Mugford are the authors of Prevalence of depression among house holds in three capital cities of Pakistan: Need to revise the mental health policy.
            Dr. Muhammad Gadit explained that Pakistan, among the other developing countries, has a higher prevalence rate of depression because of the current social adversities. “There is thus a great need for systematic studies on prevalence of depression. Our study aims at exploring the prevalence of depression among households in three capital cities of Pakistan.”
            A sample of 820 people were randomly selected and a cross sectional telephone based study was conducted for a duration of six months. “It was found that there was a regional variation in prevalence rates for depression among the three cities. Lahore had the highest number of depressives (53.4 per cent), as compared to Quetta (43.9 per cent) and Karachi (35.7 per cent). Middle age, female gender and secondary school level of education were significantly associated with depression among the study group.”
            Dr. Muhammad Gadit said the different rates of prevalence rate among three cities could be attributed to local cultural influence, geographical locations and social adversities and point to a need for revision of existing health policy by the government. 
            Dr. Muhammad Gadit graduated in 1984 from Dow Medical College, Karachi, Pakistan. He holds MRCPsych, FRCP, BCPsych, DPM, DCP and PhD (UK). Before accepting a faculty position at Memorial, he was a consultant psychiatrist at the Dr. Everett Chalmers Hospital in Fredericton, NB. He has wide experience in general adult, geriatric and transcultural psychiatry. He is author of six books and more than 63 scientific articles, including a 2004 publication on the prevalence of depression and the associated risk factors among adult women in a fishing community.
            Dr. Mugford holds a PhD from Memorial University. He is a clinical epidemiologist and holds a joint appointment with the School of Pharmacy and the Faculty of Medicine in the disciplines of medicine and psychiatry.

- 30 -