Training Primary Care Staff to Deliver a Computer-Assisted Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Program for Anxiety Disorders

Published In: General Hospital Psychiatry, v. 33, no. 4, July/Aug. 2011, p. 336-342

Posted on RAND.org on June 30, 2011

by Raphael D. Rose, Ariel J Lang, Stacy Shaw Welch, Laura Campbell-Sills, Denise A. Chavira, Greer Sullivan, Cathy D. Sherbourne, Alexander Bystritsky, Murray Stein, Peter Roy-Byrne, Michelle G. Craske

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OBJECTIVES: This paper describes the training approach used with primary care staff to deliver an evidence-based computer-assisted cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) program for anxiety disorders within a collaborative care treatment delivery model. METHODS:: We describe the training and proficiency evaluation procedures utilized in the Coordinated Anxiety Learning and Management (CALM) study, a large multisite study of collaborative care for anxiety disorders in primary care. Training incorporated readings, didactic presentations, video demonstrations of CBT skills, role-plays, computer-assisted practice, CBT training cases and ongoing group supervision provided by study psychologists. RESULTS: Proficiency training case data from 15 clinicians are presented. The anxiety clinical specialists (ACSs) were highly proficient at delivering the CBT component of the CALM intervention. The ACSs also provided Likert-scale ratings and open-ended responses about their experiences with the training. Overall, the training was rated very positively and was described as very thorough, indicating a high level of acceptability to clinicians. Recommendations for future training are described. CONCLUSIONS: Primary care staff with none or minimal prior CBT experience can be trained to deliver a computer-assisted, evidence-based treatment for anxiety disorders. The implications for dissemination and transportability of evidenced-based interventions are discussed.

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