The findings from this study will be used to support wider efforts to scale up evidence-based mental health interventions for young people.
Sonal Mathur, Sangath, New Delhi, India.
Helen A Weiss, Medical Research Council International Statistics and Epidemiology Group, Faculty of Epidemiology and Population Health, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, London, United Kingdom.
Melissa Neuman, Medical Research Council International Statistics and Epidemiology Group, Faculty of Epidemiology and Population Health, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, London, United Kingdom.
Andy P Field, School of Psychology, University of Sussex, Brighton, United Kingdom.
Baptiste Leurent, Department of Statistical Science, University College London, London, United Kingdom.
Tejaswi Shetty, Sangath, New Delhi, India.
James E J, Sangath, New Delhi, India.
Pooja Nair, Sangath, New Delhi, India.
Rhea Mathews, Sangath, New Delhi, India.
Kanika Malik, Associate Professor, Jindal School of Psychology and Counselling, O.P. Jindal Global University, Sonipat, Haryana, India.
Daniel Michelson, School of Psychology, University of Sussex, Brighton, United Kingdom; Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience, King’s College London, London, United Kingdom.
Vikram Patel, Department of Global Health and Social Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, United States.
Psychosocial interventions delivered by nonspecialists can be effective at reducing common adolescent mental health problems in low-resource settings. However, there is a lack of evidence on resource-efficient methods for building capacity to deliver these interventions.
The objective of this study is to evaluate the effects of a digital training (DT) course, delivered in a self-guided format or with coaching, on nonspecialists’ competency to deliver a problem-solving intervention intended for adolescents with common mental health problems in India.
We will conduct a pre-post study with a nested parallel, 2-arm, individually randomized controlled trial. The study aims to recruit 262 participants, randomized 1:1 to receive either a self-guided DT course or a DT course with weekly individualized coaching provided remotely by telephone. In both arms, the DT will be accessed over 4 to 6 weeks. Participants will be nonspecialists (ie, without prior practice-based training in psychological therapies) recruited from among university students and affiliates of nongovernmental organizations in Delhi and Mumbai, India.
Outcomes will be assessed at baseline and 6 weeks post randomization using a knowledge-based competency measure that incorporates a multiple-choice quiz format. The primary hypothesis is that self-guided DT will lead to increased competency scores among novices with no prior experience of delivering psychotherapies. The secondary hypothesis is that digital training with coaching will have an incremental effect on competency scores compared with DT alone. The first participant was enrolled on April 4, 2022.
The study will address an evidence gap on the effectiveness of training methods for nonspecialist providers of adolescent mental health interventions in low-resource settings. The findings from this study will be used to support wider efforts to scale up evidence-based mental health interventions for young people.
Published in: JMIR Research Protocols
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