Online depression support helps recovery
Therapist-delivered internet psychotherapy for depression in primary care: a randomised controlled trial. Kessler D, Lewis G, Kaur S, Wiles N, King M, Weich S, Sharp DJ, Araya R, Hollinghurst S, Peters TJ. Lancet. 2009. 374 (9690): 628-34.
To investigate the effectiveness of online cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) delivered in real time by a therapist to patients with depression.
297 UK patients with a diagnosis of depression, and a score of 14 or more on the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI).
Participants were randomly assigned to have either online CBT as an intervention in addition to usual care or the usual care from their family doctor while on an 8-month waiting list for online CBT.
- More patients receiving the online CBT intervention recovered from depression (had a BDI score of less than 10) compared to those receiving usual care only.
- After 4 months 38% of patients had recovered in the intervention group versus 24% in the control group.
- After 8 months 42% of patients had recovered in the intervention group versus 26% in the control group.
What does this mean?
Online cognitive behavior therapy can provide extra support to help people to recover from depression.