Can Low-Cost Strategies Improve Attendance Rates in Brief Psychological Therapy? Double-Blind Randomized Controlled Trial

Jaime Delgadillo, Omar Moreea, Elizabeth Murphy, Shehzad Ali, Joshua K. Swift

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

6 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Objectives: To assess if telephone text message appointment reminders and orientation leaflets can increase the proportion of patients who attend brief interventions after being assessed as suitable for guided self-help following cognitive behavioral therapy principles. Method: Attendance was operationally defined as having accessed at least 1 therapy appointment. A secondary outcome was the proportion of attenders who completed or dropped out of therapy. After initial assessment, 254 patients with depression and anxiety disorders were randomly assigned to 1 of 3 groups: (a) usual waitlist control, (b) leaflet, (c) leaflet plus text message. Differences in the proportions of patients who started and completed therapy across groups were assessed using chi-square and logistic regression analyses. Results: Overall, 63% of patients in this sample attended therapy. Between-group differences were not significant for attendance, x2(2) = 3.94, p = .14, or completion rates, x2(2) = 2.98, p = .23. These results were not confounded by demographic or clinical characteristics. Conclusions: Low-cost strategies appear to make no significant difference to therapy attendance and completion rates.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1139-1152
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Clinical Psychology
Volume71
Issue number12
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2015
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Attrition
  • Cognitive behavioral therapy
  • Dropout
  • Guided self-help
  • Randomized controlled trial

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