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An Impressive Step in Identifying Evidence-Based Psychotherapies for Geriatric Depression


Address correspondence to Paula Hartman-Stein, Center for Healthy Aging, 265 W. Main St., Ste. 102, Kent, OH 44240–2403. E-mail:


The substantive contribution identifying six evidence-based psychotherapies for geriatric depression by Scogin, Welsh, Hanson, Stump, and Coates is laudable. Their analysis of studies from the 1980s to the present, which recognizes treatments with clear research support, will likely prove valuable to clinicians, researchers, and political advocates. However, their efforts are an initial step. The scope and depth of the findings are limited as a result of the decision to exclude studies of depression with comorbid medical conditions, particularly field research done in primary-care settings, as well as those that use both medication and psychological strategies. Included in this commentary are some caveats regarding the pragmatics of financial reimbursement for the identified EBTs.