Next review date: 2017

The NICE guideline on depression in children and young people covers:

  • the care children and young people with depression can expect to get from their doctor, nurse or counsellor
  • the information they can expect to be given
  • what they can expect from treatment
  • the kinds of services that can help young people and children with depression, including your family doctor (general practitioner or GP), health staff at your school, and specialists in clinics or hospitals

This guideline was previously called depression in children and young people: identification and management in primary, community and secondary care

March 2015

Recommendations on psychological therapies and antidepressants have been added to and updated in sections 1.5 and 1.6. The addendum contains details of the methods and evidence used to update these recommendations.

Your responsibility

The recommendations in this guideline represent the view of NICE, arrived at after careful consideration of the evidence available. When exercising their judgement, professionals are expected to take this guideline fully into account, alongside the individual needs, preferences and values of their patients or service users. The application of the recommendations in this guideline is not mandatory and the guideline does not override the responsibility of healthcare professionals to make decisions appropriate to the circumstances of the individual patient, in consultation with the patient and/or their carer or guardian.

Local commissioners and/or providers have a responsibility to enable the guideline to be applied when individual health professionals and their patients or service users wish to use it. They should do so in the context of local and national priorities for funding and developing services, and in light of their duties to have due regard to the need to eliminate unlawful discrimination, to advance equality of opportunity and to reduce health inequalities. Nothing in this guideline should be interpreted in a way that would be inconsistent with compliance with those duties.