Moving Us Closer To Osler
A Miller Coulson Academy of Clinical Excellence Initiative

May is Mental Health Awareness Month. What’s one question that you ask patients to screen for psychiatric illness?

May is Mental Health Awareness Month.


“When was the last time you felt like your usual self?”-Dr. Margaret Chisolm, Johns Hopkins Medicine

Lifelong Learning in Clinical Excellence | May 13, 2022 | <1 min read


Dr. Colleen Christmas, Johns Hopkins Medicine

I think older adults tend to be more comfortable with the word “nerves,” rather than “mental health.” So I ask, “Have you had any struggles with your nerves, like feeling down, irritable, or worried?” I then follow with, “Can you tell me what that is like for you?”

Dr. Margaret Chisolm, Johns Hopkins Medicine

When was the last time you felt like your usual self?

What do you think?

Do you want to add to the conversation? Please share!

Dr. Jeff Millstein, Penn Medicine

Has anything been weighing on you emotionally these days?

Dr. Eric Last, Northwell Health

We’ve talked about how you’re feeling. Now tell me how you’re doing.

Dr. Juliette Perzhinsky

“How are you doing, dear?” I asked. My patient then asked if I’d seen the movie “A Beautiful Mind.” I replied that I had, and she said, “I hope you don’t think I’m crazy, but I hear voices.” I let her know I appreciated her sharing this and reassured her that she had a treatable condition.

Dr. Susan Lehmann, Johns Hopkins Medicine

A few of my favorites include asking about new difficulties with sleep, changes in appetite or weight, and how much alcohol patients are drinking.

Dr. Shannon Scott-Vernaglia, Mass General

For teens I like to ask, “What do you do for fun?” If they can’t come up with anything, I’m worried.