Feasibility randomised controlled trial of a one-day CBT workshop (“DISCOVER”) for 15-18 year olds with anxiety and/or depression in clinic settings

Loucas, Christina E, Sclare, Irene, Stahl, Daniel and Michelson, Daniel (2019) Feasibility randomised controlled trial of a one-day CBT workshop (“DISCOVER”) for 15-18 year olds with anxiety and/or depression in clinic settings. Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapy. ISSN 1352-4658

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Background: “DISCOVER” one-day cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) workshops have been developed to provide accessible, developmentally-sensitive psychological support for older adolescents experiencing emotional difficulties. Previous school-based evaluations of the DISCOVER model have shown positive outcomes.

Aims: The current study aimed to test the model for clinically-referred adolescents, in real-world settings.

Method: A randomised controlled trial (RCT) assessed feasibility, acceptability and preliminary outcomes of the DISCOVER intervention, in comparison with usual care, for 15-18-year-olds with emotional difficulties. Participants were recruited from outpatient clinic waiting lists in UK child and adolescent mental health services (CAMHS). Research feasibility indicators included rates of recruitment, randomisation, intervention participation (group workshops and individualised follow-up telephone calls), and data collection (at baseline and 8-week follow-up). Intervention acceptability was assessed using a structured service satisfaction questionnaire and semi-structured qualitative interviews with intervention participants. Preliminary clinical outcomes were explored using adolescent-reported validated measures of depression, anxiety and well-being.

Results: N=24 participants were randomised to intervention and usual care groups. Workshop attendance was good and high levels of treatment satisfaction were reported, although feasibility challenges emerged in recruitment and randomisation. Trends were found towards potential improvements in anxiety and well-being for the intervention group, but the effect estimate for depression was imprecise; interpretability was also limited due to the small sample size.

Conclusions: DISCOVER appears to be a feasible and acceptable intervention model for clinically-referred 15-18-year-olds with emotional difficulties. A full-scale RCT is warranted to evaluate effectiveness; protocol modifications may be necessary to ensure feasible recruitment and randomisation procedures.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Adolescent; anxiety; depression; CBT; RCT
Schools and Departments: School of Psychology > Psychology
Depositing User: Sanjeedah Choudhury
Date Deposited: 18 Feb 2019 13:18
Last Modified: 01 Jul 2019 14:15
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/81978

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