Prevalence of psychological distress in university students: Implications for service delivery

Stallman, H. M. (2008) Prevalence of psychological distress in university students: Implications for service delivery. Australian Family Physician, 37 8: 673-677.

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Author Stallman, H. M.
Title Prevalence of psychological distress in university students: Implications for service delivery
Journal name Australian Family Physician   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0300-8495
Publication date 2008-01-01
Sub-type Article (original research)
Open Access Status
Volume 37
Issue 8
Start page 673
End page 677
Total pages 5
Place of publication South Melbourne, Vic., Australia
Publisher Royal Australian College of General Practitioners
Language eng
Abstract Background: Mental health problems are one of the leading causes of disability in Australia. General practitioners are often the first and only point of service for people suffering mental health problems, while many do not access services at all. University students can face numerous stressers in addition to academic demands that can contribute to the development or exacerbation of mental health problems. Objective: The aim of this study was to identify the prevalence of psychological symtoms in students who were patients at a university health service to enable appropriate planning of services to meet the needs of students. Methods: Participants were 384 students attending a university health service in urban Queensland over a period of 4 weeks during semester. At their first visit, patients completed the Kessler Psychological Distress Scale, a measure of psychological distress. Results: Results showed there were significantly more patients experiencing high levels of distress compared with the general population and, consistent with the general population, almost two-thirds had not sought assistance for this distress. Increased distress was associated with increased disability among students. Discussion: Within a university setting, co-location of specialist mental health service can promise a team approach to mental health care, with GPs, psychiatrists and clinicl psychologists working together to increase the availability of care to students in need. The recent introduction of Medicare terms for psyhological treatment also facilitates greater access to clinical psyhologists and other mental health professionals.
Keyword Mental health
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status Non-UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collection: School of Psychology Publications
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Created: Mon, 22 Nov 2010, 09:51:23 EST by Helen Stallman on behalf of School of Psychology