Objective: Which health care barriers do patients with anxiety and depressive disorders experience on their clinical pathways? Methods: Semi-structured interviews were conducted among 30 patients with anxiety and depressive disorders. Interviews were audio-taped, transcribed, coded and content-analysed. Results: Following barriers perceived by patients were extracted: a lack of early diagnosis, communication and coordination problems between different services and providers, little information about their illness and its adequate treatment, as well as intrapersonal barriers. Conclusions: Patients perceive barriers on the individual, provider and system level. Especially barriers on the system and provider level indicate a need for more information, early recognition and support especially during the help-seeking process.