• e-MH programs for anxiety



    There are two main types of online treatment programs for anxiety: self-help and therapist assisted.

    Self-help treatment programs

    What are these programs?
    Self-help computerised treatment programs typically draw on Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT) as well as other evidence-based therapies. There is increasing evidence that these programs can be cost effective and have efficacy.

    What is the evidence?
    A recent systematic review and meta-analysis of computerised cognitive behaviour therapy concluded that it may be an effective low intensity psychological intervention for common mental health disorders, including anxiety and depression (Grist & Kavanagh, 2013).

    General programs
    e-couch - evidence based information and self-help strategies drawn from CBT and IPT with interactive modules for general anxiety, panic, worry and social anxiety.

    myCompass
    - aims to improve resilience and wellbeing for people with anxiety. Includes internet and mobile phone-based mood tracking, motivational messages and self-help modules.

    Centre for Clinical Interventions
    - provides free workbooks and information for a range of anxiety concerns including panic, social anxiety, worry and health anxiety.

    Programs for young people:
    The Brave Program - prevention, early intervention and treatment of anxiety. It has child (8-12 years), teen (12-17 years), and parent components.

    OCD?Not Me!
    program is for people aged 12-18 years with OCD. It has eight stages and provides information, tips, activities as well as support for parents and caregivers.


    Therapist assisted online treatment programs

    What are these programs?
    Therapist-assisted online programs typically draw on Cognitive Behaviour Therapy and other evidence-based therapies. Users work through psycho-educational material and exercises in the online program and receive support from human therapists. This can be from in-house therapists using text-based communication such as email or via telephone. Many therapist-assisted programs also provide self-help interventions.

    What is the evidence?
    Therapist supported programs are accumulating a strong evidence base. One recent meta-analysis concluded that internet-based CBT treatments for social phobia and panic disorder were "well-established" according to the evidence criteria specified by the American Psychological Association.
    For 22 other disorders, the authors concluded that if face to face CBT worked, it was likely that internet based CBT would also work (Hedman et al, 2012).

    Specific programs:
    The MindSpot Clinic is the Australian Government’s free clinic. It has in-house therapists who provide assessment, referral and support as people work through Mindspot courses. Courses include Wellbeing (18+,18-25 years, 60+, Indigenous), OCD and PTSD. Self-referral or email/online clinician referral.

    eCentreClinic evaluates courses for adults and older adults – including anxiety, OCD, PTSD. Self-guided and therapist-supported courses are available.

    Mental Health Online
    provides information, automated assessment and treatment programs for anxiety, panic, OCD, and PTSD. Courses available as self-help for free or with in-house therapist support for a small fee.

    THIS WAY UP
    provides therapist-assisted and self-help courses for anxiety (GAD, mixed depression/anxiety, panic, social phobia, OCD). People can complete the courses as self-help or with support from their clinician. There is a small cost to patients.


    Want more info?
    - Check out our printable resources here.

    - Watch our free recorded webinars.

    - Search on the Australian Government's MindHealthConnect portal or the Beacon site.

    - Share your experiences in the members' section of eMHPrac Exchange. Just register here.



    References
    Grist, R & Cavanagh K. 2013. Computerised cognitive behavioural therapy for common mental health disorders, what works, for whom under what circumstances? A systematic review and meta-analysis. J Contemp Psychother, 43: 243-251.

    Hedman E, Ljotsson B, Lindefors N. 2012. Cognitive behavior therapy via the Internet: a systematic review of applications, clinical efficacy and cost–effectiveness. Expert Rev Pharmacoecon Outcomes Res,12: 745–64. www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1586/erp.12.67

    eMHPrac Exchange
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