The Trimbos Institute is collaborating with 13 mental health organisations (GGZ) to conduct research on improving self-management in clients with chronic anxiety and depression.
Many clients suffering from chronic anxiety and depression who are receiving treatment at secondary level should preferably be receiving primary level health care. According to psychiatrist and head researcher Jan Spijker, approximately 20% to 30% of clients diagnosed with anxiety or depression in GGZ mental health institutions have been receiving treatment for over two years. These are people who have not recovered, despite having followed therapies and taken medication.
Treatment for these clients consists of 'supportive contacts' with a social-psychiatric nurse and medication under the care of a psychiatrist. The researchers want to establish whether this treatment could equally take place at primary level (in general practice). Self-Management
The ZemCAD study (Self-management for Chronic Anxiety and Depression) examines whether this specific group of clients are able to track their symptoms independently (self-management), while being attended by primary care professionals.
For this purpose, the clients participate in a course that teaches them how to deal with symptoms and crisis situations. They also learn how to resume activities, despite their problems. After the course, they are monitored to see if treatment at secondary level can be transferred to primary level.
Secondary level professionals advise their primary level colleagues on supporting these clients. The study compares the quality of life, symptoms and health care utilisation of clients who attend the course with a control group who do not.
More information: Anna Muntingh