An evaluation of the impact of a large group psycho-education programme (Stress Control) on patient outcome: does empathy make a difference?

Joice, A. and Mercer, S.W. (2010) An evaluation of the impact of a large group psycho-education programme (Stress Control) on patient outcome: does empathy make a difference? Cognitive Behaviour Therapist, 3(1), pp. 1-17. (doi:10.1017/S1754470X10000012)

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Publisher's URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S1754470X10000012

Abstract

Large psycho-education groups are being increasingly used in mental-health promotion and the treatment of common mental-health problems. In individual therapy there is a well-established link between therapist empathy, therapeutic relationship and patient outcome but the role of empathy within large psycho-educational groups is unknown. This service evaluation investigated the impact of a 6-week large psycho-education group on patient outcome and the role of perceived therapist empathy on outcome. Within a before1.14) (t = 9.18, d.f. = 55, p = <0.001) and attendees felt highly enabled. Attendees perceived the course leader as highly empathetic. However, the relationship between perceived empathy and attendee outcome was less clear; no significant relationship was found with the main outcome measure (the change in CORE score). Factors that influenced the main outcome included age, symptom severity at baseline, having a long-term illness or disability, and whether attendees tried the techniques at home (homework). These findings suggest that large group psycho-education is an effective treatment for mild to moderate mental-health problems, at least in the short term. The role of therapist empathy remains ambiguous but may be important for some patient outcomes

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Mercer, Professor Stewart
Authors: Joice, A., and Mercer, S.W.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Health and Wellbeing > General Practice and Primary Care
Journal Name:Cognitive Behaviour Therapist
ISSN (Online):1754-470X

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