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Health Indicator Report of Mental Health - Adult Depression

Depression is one of the most prevalent and treatable mental disorders. Major depression is usually associated with co-morbid mental disorders, such as anxiety and substance use disorders, and impairment of a person's ability to function in work, home, relationship, and social roles. Depression is also a risk factor for suicide and attempted suicide. In addition, depressive disorders have been associated with an increased prevalence of chronic medical conditions, such as heart disease, stroke, asthma, arthritis, cancer, diabetes, and obesity.

Current Depression, Adults Aged 18+ by Health Region, New Mexico, 2016

Rates of current depression did not vary meaningfully by region of residence.
Rates of current depression did not vary meaningfully by region of residence.


The Anxiety and Depression Module, included as a state-added module of the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) in 2011 and 2016, comprises the first eight questions from the Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-8), an instrument that can establish a provisional depressive disorder diagnosis using Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition (DSM-IV) criteria. These eight questions ask how many days over the past two weeks the respondents experienced each of the eight symptoms. The number of days during which symptoms were reported were converted to points; the number of points were then summed across the 8 questions to determine the severity of depressive symptoms. A cut-off score of 10 points or more was used to define current depression.

Data Source

Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System Survey Data, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, together with New Mexico Department of Health, Injury and Behavioral Epidemiology Bureau.

Data Interpretation Issues

Data for this indicator report are from the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS), an ongoing survey of adults regarding their health-related behaviors, health conditions, and preventive services. Data are collected in all 50 states, D.C., and U.S. territories. Responses have been weighted to reflect the New Mexico adult population by age, sex, ethnicity, geographic region, marital status, education level, home ownership and type of phone ownership. The survey is conducted using scientific telephone survey methods for landline and cellular phones (with cellular since 2011). The landline phone portion of the survey excludes adults living in group quarters such as college dormitories, nursing homes, military barracks, and prisons. The cellular phone portion of the survey includes adult students living in college dormitories but excludes other group quarters. Beginning with 2011, the BRFSS updated its surveillance methods by adding in calls to cell phones and changing its weighting methods. These changes improve BRFSS' ability to take into account the increasing proportion of U.S. adults using only cellular telephones as well as to adjust survey data to improve the representativeness of the estimates generated from the survey. Results have been adjusted for the probability of selection of the respondent and have been weighted to the adult population by age, gender, phone type, detailed race/ethnicity, renter/owner, education, marital status, and geographic area. Lastly and importantly, these changes mean that the data from years prior to 2011 are not directly comparable to data from 2011 and beyond (see The "missing" and "don't know" responses are removed before calculating a percentage.


Percentage of NM residents 18 years or older who screened positive for current depression in the two weeks prior to taking a phone survey.


Number of survey respondents who reported a total of 10 depressive symptom-days or more within the two weeks prior to survey.


Number of survey respondents excluding those with missing, "Don't know/Not sure," and "Refused" responses.

Healthy People Objective: MHMD-4, Reduce the proportion of persons who experience major depressive episode (MDE)

U.S. Target: Not applicable, see subobjectives in this category

Other Objectives

Substance Abuse Epidemiology Report Indicator Mental Health Report Indicator

How Are We Doing?

In 2016, 9.8% of NM residents 18 years or older screened positive for current depression.

How Do We Compare With the U.S.?

According to results of the 2016 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), 6.7% of U.S. residents 18 years and older experienced a major depressive episode in the past year.

What Is Being Done?

The Department of Health Epidemiology and Response Division conducts ongoing surveillance for indicators of mental health among students and adults in every county of New Mexico. The Human Services Department recently modernized the New Mexico Medicaid system by integrating physical and behavioral health services in the Centennial Care program, which will help treat an individual in a more holistic manner.

Evidence-based Practices

For reviews of evidence-based practices, please see: -US Preventive Services Task Force: -Centers for Disease Control and Prevention?s Community Guide: -Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration?s National Registry of Evidence-Based Programs and Practices:

Available Services

To talk to a counselor or ask questions about treatment 24/7, call the New Mexico Crisis Line: 1-855-NMCRISIS (662-7474) If you would like to seek treatment, please contact: -Network of Care for Behavioral Health [] -SAMHSA Treatment Referral Helpline: 1-800-662-HELP (4357), also online at [] -The SKY Center []: 1-505-473-6191 -New Mexico Social Service Resource Directory []: 1-800-432-2080 -SHARE New Mexico Resource Directory: [] -United Way Central New Mexico Referral Service []: 505-245-1735 Resources for veterans and their families: [] To join a support group organized by Optum Health, please register at: []

Health Program Information

The BRFSS is an ongoing survey of adults regarding their health-related risk behaviors, chronic health conditions, and use of preventive services. Data are collected in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and U.S. territories. The survey is conducted using scientific telephone survey methods for landline and cellular phones (landline only from 1986 through 2010; landline and cellular since 2011).
Page Content Updated On 03/30/2018, Published on 05/30/2018
The information provided above is from the New Mexico Department of Health's NM-IBIS web site ( The information published on this website may be reproduced without permission. Please use the following citation: "Retrieved Wed, 01 December 2021 from New Mexico Department of Health, Indicator-Based Information System for Public Health Web site:".

Content updated: Wed, 30 May 2018 17:04:25 MDT