Background: Despite the increasing recognition that medical training tends to coincide with markedly high levels of stress and distress, there is a dearth of validated measures that are capable of gauging the prevalence of depressive symptoms among medical residents in the Arab/Islamic part of the world. Objective: The aim of the present study is two-fold. First is to examine the diagnostic validity of the Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-9) using an Omani medical resident population in order to establish a cut-off point. Second is to compare gender, age, and residency level among Omani Medical residents who report current depressive symptomatology versus those who report as non-depressed according to PHQ-9 cut-off threshold. Results: A total of 132 residents (42 males and 90 females) consented to participate in this study. The cut-off score of 12 on the PHQ-9 revealed a sensitivity of 80.6% and a specificity of 94.0%. The rate of depression, as elicited by PHQ-9, was 11.4%. The role of gender, age, and residency level was not significant in endorsing depression. Conclusion: This study indicated that PHQ-9 is a reliable measure among this cross-cultural population. More studies employing robust methodology are needed to confirm this finding.
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