British Journal of Clinical Psychology

Improving access to psychological therapies: Phase IV prospective cohort study

David A. Richards,

Corresponding Author

David A. Richards

University of Exeter, Exeter, Devon, UK

Correspondence should be addressed to Professor David A. Richards, School of Psychology, University of Exeter, Washington Singer Building, Perry Road, Exeter EX4 4QG, UK (e-mail: d.a.richards@exeter.ac.uk).Search for more papers by this author
Rupert Suckling,

Rupert Suckling

Doncaster Primary Care Trust, Mexborough, UK

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First published: 24 December 2010
Citations: 102
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Abstract

Objectives. To determine the effects of implementing stepped care evidence-based psychological treatments for anxiety and depression in routine practice using a collaborative care implementation model.

Design. Observational prospective cohort study/Phase IV field trial.

Methods. We collected data on depression and anxiety from a prospective cohort of 3,994 consecutive patients referred to the UK Improving Access to Psychological Therapies demonstration site in Doncaster for 12 months from August 2006 using PHQ-9 and GAD-7. We collected demographic and process information including the type and methods of treatments received. We calculated effect sizes, remission, and recovery rates for patients competing treatment and those who dropped out or were considered to be unsuitable.

Results. Two thousand seven hundred and ninety-five patients received an assessment, out of which 2,017 received two or more appointments. Out of these, 869 had completed treatment by the census date, 743 remained in treatment, 319 had dropped out, and 85 had been found to be unsuitable. Pre–post treatment effect sizes for anxiety and depression in those patients completing treatment were 1.39 and 1.41, respectively, with post-treatment relative risks of depression and anxiety 0.29 and 0.34. The combined remission and recovery rates were 76% for depression and 74% for anxiety. The mean number of treatment sessions was 5.15 in a mean time of 2 h and 45 min. On an average, patients received at least three of these contacts by telephone. Outcomes are comparable with benchmarked trials, reviews, and routine datasets.

Conclusions. Combining low-intensity stepped care psychological treatment with a telephony-based collaborative care organizational system can deliver good clinical outcomes in routine practice.