MDD Project Summary and Current Phase
Depressive disorders are among the most commonly diagnosed mental illnesses. An estimated one in every four Canadians has a degree of depression severe enough to need treatment at some time in their life. Depression may affect someone once or many times in their life, or it may be chronic. There are three major types of depression: major depressive disorder (MDD), persistent depressive disorder (dysthymia) and bipolar disorder. The MDD Project’s focus is on major depressive disorder; specifically with Canadians whose depression is unresolved after the use of two or more antidepressant agents.
The MDD Project is comprised of three components:
1. Alberta-wide study- The MDD Project’s Alberta-wide studies began in 2018, gathering data directly from Albertans impacted by MDD. The research has explored people’s experiences with different treatment options and contributed to a greater understanding of Albertans’ experiences living with unresolved depression. CMHA, Alberta Division utilizes this information to advocate for and facilitate greater mental health access for Albertans. You can read the Alberta MDD Report here.
2. Canada-wide study- The MDD Project’s research has expanded across Canada to initiate Canada-wide MDD research collection. The research and data gathered allows CMHA to support colleagues in every province as they work with those impacted by MDD.
3. Knowledge transfer and advocacy- The Alberta-wide and Canada-wide research informs the development of recovery and support services advocated for, and offered by, CMHA across the country. The most relevant support materials and services are distributed to Canadians within their communities and workplaces.
The MDD Project includes an advisory committee composed of three individuals with lived MDD experience and two psychologists. CMHA utilizes this information to advocate for and facilitate greater mental health access for Canadians. CMHA focuses on recovery and support for Albertans impacted by mental illness, standing with people living in their communities as they achieve their wellness goals. CMHA staff and volunteers engage clients in navigation within the complex matrix of mental health services.
In September 2020, the Alberta Division of CMHA expanded the Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) Project’s research across Canada, learning from Canadians impacted by MDD. The expansion has been initiated with a Canada-wide survey, permitting Canada-wide collection of MDD lived-experience research. The survey will be available from September 14-October 9, 2020. Please note the survey is now closed.
The MDD Project’s depression survey is open to all Canadians impacted by depression who have found two or more medications ineffective in treating their depressive symptoms. CMHA’s research informs the development of relevant MDD support services offered by CMHA across Canada. The Major Depressive Disorder Project collects data directly from individuals impacted by MDD, exploring people’s experiences with different treatment options.
Depression resources for family and friends
CMHA has resources for family and friends of those living with MDD. These resources cover reaction and adjustments, what to expect when depression appears and how to help.
If you need help, use these telephone resources
Reaching out for help is an important step. Talk with someone you trust about how you feel. Life can be overwhelming and there are supports available to you.
Alberta MDD Report
The information collected by the Alberta MDD Report contributed to a greater understanding of individuals living with, or caring for someone living with, unresolved depression. CMHA will use the research findings to support Canadians impacted by depression, particularly when existing treatment options have not provided relief.