Designing and Evaluating an Asynchronous Remote Communication Approach to Behavioral Activation with Clinicians and Adolescents at Risk for Depression
- Julie Kientz, PhD, Associate Professor, Human Centered Design and Engineering
- Jessica Jenness, PhD, Acting Assistant Professor, Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences
National data indicate 7.5-12% adolescents are diagnosed with depression (MDD) each year. Adolescents across the spectrum of MDD severity are at risk for lifelong negative outcomes such as increased odds for MDD recurrence into adulthood. Despite the rise in MDD in adolescence, only 1% of U.S. youths receive outpatient care for MDD each year with low engagement among those treated. Furthermore, uptake of evidence-based approaches into usual care has been slow given training and implementation challenges. Innovations capitalizing on the near ubiquitous use of technology platforms among adolescents may be critical for improving the usability of evidence-based psychosocial interventions (EBPI). This research aims to address critical barriers in EBPI usability by engaging patient and clinician target users to adapt an EBPI, Behavioral Activation (BA), to a novel technology platform that uses asynchronous remote communities (ARC) to optimize patient engagement, improve access to care, and lower clinician burden. Specifically, we aim to use an ARC approach with adolescents, primary care physicians, and mental health specialists to 1) discover target user needs, design constraints, and experiences with ARC; 2) design and build an ARC platform for BA delivery with adolescents; and 3) test the feasibility and usability with groups of adolescent and clinician target users.