By PAUL SIMS
The Daily Mail
November 9, 2006
A girl of four is being treated for stress and depression after she was refused a place at her local school.
Mollie Murphy became so distraught at being separated from her best friends that she had to see a doctor.
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Last night, the youngster's mother spoke of her shock after the GP said he would consider a course of anti-depressants and counselling if Mollie's condition does not improve.
"When he said she had stress and depression at first I thought he must be joking," said 26-year-old hairdresser Victoria Anderson.
"I thought, how can a little girl suffer from that? It's an adult's problem and Mollie's only four. But he told me it does happen."
Although the number of children suffering from depression remains relatively low, experts claim the rate has dramatically increased in recent years.
According to research by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence, as many as 40,000 children and adolescents were prescribed anti-depressants in 2003.
Miss Anderson said her daughter started experiencing problems in September.