Prevalence and associated factors of depression among final year medical students of Kampala International University

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Kampala International University, School of Health Sciences
Depression has slowly but steadily become a serious public health concern globally. It has become the second highest leading cause of morbidity among people within the 15–44-year age group and is projected to become the second leading cause of early death and disability by 2020. Medical school is a time of significant psychological distress for many students. Previous studies suggest higher prevalence of depression among medical students in comparison to the general population. Studies have revealed that the high prevalence of depression in physicians can partly be traced back to the medical education they received. Thus, the psychological well-being of medical students is of vital significance not only for the medical students themselves, but also for the quality of health care they will provide and doctor-patient relationship in the future. The study assessed the prevalence and associated factors of depression among senior (finalist) medical students at KIU-Western campus in January 2018. A questionnaire based cross sectional study was carried out among the final year medical students of Kampala International University, Uganda. 65 students in the Fort Portal regional referral hospital and Kiryandongo General Hospital sites were enrolled in the study conducted between December 2017 and February 2018. The depression and Suicidality levels were assessed using Mini-International Neuropsychiatric Interview questionnaire. The associated factors were also assessed. The overall prevalence of depression among the respondents was 25percent. The prevalence of depression among males was noted to be higher versus females. Other associated factors such as nationality, marital status, anxiety about failing exams and having a retake/repeat, sources of tuition and medical school related stress all showed a correlation with depression and student grades. The prevalence of past major depressive episodes was 12% that of current major depressive episodes (8%) and that of recurrent major depressive episodes was the least at 5%, demands the need of group counseling facilities within the medical college. Majority of the students who also reported having previously had a retake or a repeat also reported to find medical school stressful. So, attempts should be made to alleviate the stressors right from the time they join medical school. Since academic stress proved to be one of the major factors, measures to make the academic curriculum more student-friendly are suggested
A research report submitted to the Faculty of Clinical Medicine and Dentistry in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the award of a degree of Bachelor of Medicine and Surgery of Kampala International University
Depression, Medical students, Kampala International University