Implementing Cognitive Behavioral Therapy in the real world: A case study of two mental health centers
1 Department of Psychiatry, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, Little Rock, AR, USA
2 Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Duke University School of Medicine, Durham, NC, USA
Implementation Science 2008, 3:14 doi:10.1186/1748-5908-3-14Published: 29 February 2008
Behavioral health services for children and adolescents in the U.S. are lacking in accessibility, availability and quality. Evidence-based interventions for emotional and behavioral disorders can improve quality, yet few studies have systematically examined their implementation in routine care settings.
Using quantitative and qualitative data, we evaluated a multi-faceted implementation strategy to implement cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) for depressed adolescents into two publicly-funded mental healthcare centers. Extent of implementation during the study's duration and variables influencing implementation were explored.
Of the 35 clinicians eligible to participate, 25 (71%) were randomized into intervention (n = 11) or usual care (n = 14). Nine intervention clinicians completed the CBT training. Sixteen adolescents were enrolled in CBT with six of the intervention clinicians; half of these received at least six CBT manually-based sessions. Multiple barriers to CBT adoption and sustained use were identified by clinicians in qualitative interviews.
Strategies to implement evidence-based interventions into routine clinical settings should include multi-method, pre-implementation assessments of the clinical environment and address multiple barriers to initial uptake as well as long-term sustainability.