Despite the high frequency of depression and mentalillness among the elderly, a new study has found that doctors do not spend alot of time on these issues with patients.

More than 50% of patients simply do not speak with theirdoctors about their mental health, authors say. It became a topic of discussionin about a fifth of the visits overall.

Patients who do discuss feeling of depression with theirdoctors have reported that sometimes the doctors’ response is ineffective orworse than the problem, the report says. The study, from Texas A&M’s Schoolof Rural Public Health, appeared in the December issue of The Journal of theAmerican Geriatrics Society.