A digital intervention for adolescent depression ‘MoodHwb’: mixed-methods feasibility evaluation

Bevan Jones, R. et al. (2020) A digital intervention for adolescent depression ‘MoodHwb’: mixed-methods feasibility evaluation. JMIR Mental Health, 7(7), e14536. (doi: 10.2196/14536) (PMID:32384053) (PMCID:PMC7395255)

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Background: Treatment and prevention guidelines highlight the key role of health information and evidence-based psychosocial interventions for adolescent depression. Digital health technologies and psychoeducational interventions have been recommended to help engage young people, provide accurate health information, enhance self-management skills and promote social support. However, few digital psychoeducational interventions for adolescent depression have been robustly developed and evaluated. Objective: We aimed to evaluate the feasibility, acceptability and potential impact of a theory-informed, co-designed digital intervention programme, ‘MoodHwb’. Methods: We used a mixed-methods (quantitative and qualitative) approach to evaluate the programme and the assessment process. Adolescents with or at elevated risk of depression and their parents/carers were recruited from mental health services, school counsellors/nurses and participants from a previous study. They completed questionnaires before and after the programme (to gather views and assess changes in mood, knowledge/attitudes and behaviour), and their Web usage was monitored. A subsample was also interviewed. A focus group was conducted with professionals from health, education, social and youth services/charities. Interview and focus group transcripts were analysed using inductive thematic analysis with NVivo 10. Results: Forty-four young people and 31 parents/carers were recruited, and 36 (82%) young people and 21 (68%) parents/carers completed follow-up questionnaires. Nineteen young people and 12 parents/carers were interviewed. Thirteen professionals from a range of disciplines participated in the focus group. Overall, participants found the intervention engaging, clear, user-friendly, comprehensive and helpful (particularly the ‘self help’ section), and stated it could be integrated into existing services. The findings provided initial support for the intervention programme theory, for example depression literacy improved after using the intervention. Conclusions: Findings from this early-stage evaluation suggest that ‘MoodHwb’ and the assessment process were feasible and acceptable, and that the intervention has potential to be helpful for young people and families/carers as an early intervention programme in health, education, youth and social services/charities. A randomised controlled trial is needed to further evaluate the digital programme.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Smith, Professor Daniel and Simpson, Professor Sharon
Authors: Bevan Jones, R., Thapar, A., Rice, F., Mars, B., Agha, S. S., Smith, D., Merry, S., Stallard, P., Thapar, A. K., Jones, I., and Simpson, S.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Health & Wellbeing > MRC/CSO SPHSU
College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Health & Wellbeing > Mental Health and Wellbeing
Journal Name:JMIR Mental Health
Publisher:JMIR Publications
ISSN (Online):2368-7959
Copyright Holders:Copyright ©Rhys Bevan Jones, Anita Thapar, Frances Rice, Becky Mars, Sharifah Shameem Agha, Daniel Smith, Sally Merry, Paul Stallard, Ajay K Thapar, Ian Jones, Sharon A Simpson
First Published:First published in JMIR Mental Health 7(7):e14536
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons licence

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Project CodeAward NoProject NamePrincipal InvestigatorFunder's NameFunder RefLead Dept
168560MRC SPHSU/GU Transfer FellowshipsLaurence MooreMedical Research Council (MRC)MC_PC_13027HW - MRC/CSO Social and Public Health Sciences Unit
727661SPHSU Core Renewal: Complexity in Health Improvement Research ProgrammeLaurence MooreMedical Research Council (MRC)MC_UU_12017/14IHW - MRC/CSO SPHU
727631SPHSU Core Renewal: Relationships & Health Improvement Research ProgrammeLisa McDaidMedical Research Council (MRC)MC_UU_12017/11IHW - MRC/CSO SPHU
Chief Scientist Office (CSO)SPHSU11
Chief Scientist Office (CSO)SPHSU14