Community based sociotherapy for depressive symptomatology of Congolese refugees in Rwanda and Uganda (CoSTAR): a protocol for a cluster randomised controlled trial

Kagabo, D. M. et al. (2023) Community based sociotherapy for depressive symptomatology of Congolese refugees in Rwanda and Uganda (CoSTAR): a protocol for a cluster randomised controlled trial. European Journal of Psychotraumatology, 14(1), 2151281. (doi: 10.1080/20008066.2022.2151281) (PMCID:PMC9869985)

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Background: Conflict in the Democratic Republic of Congo has led to large numbers of refugees fleeing to Uganda and Rwanda. Refugees experience elevated levels of adverse events and daily stressors, which are associated with common mental health difficulties such as depression. The current cluster randomised controlled trial aims to investigate whether an adapted form of Community-based Sociotherapy (aCBS) is effective and cost-effective in reducing depressive symptomatology experienced by Congolese refugees in Uganda and Rwanda. Methods: A two-arm, single-blind cluster randomised controlled trial (cRCT) will be conducted in Kyangwali settlement, Uganda and Gihembe camp, Rwanda. Sixty-four clusters will be recruited and randomly assigned to either aCBS or Enhanced Care As Usual (ECAU). aCBS, a 15-session group-based intervention, will be facilitated by two people drawn from the refugee communities. The primary outcome measure will be self-reported levels of depressive symptomatology (PHQ-9) at 18-weeks post-randomisation. Secondary outcomes will include levels of mental health difficulties, subjective wellbeing, post-displacement stress, perceived social support, social capital, quality of life, and PTSD symptoms at 18-week and 32-week post-randomisation. Cost effectiveness of aCBS will be measured in terms of health care costs (cost per Disability Adjusted Life Year, DALY) compared to ECAU. A process evaluation will be undertaken to investigate the implementation of aCBS. Conclusion: This cRCT will be the first investigating aCBS for mental health difficulties experienced by refugees and will contribute to knowledge about the use of psychosocial interventions for refugees at a time when levels of forced migration are at a record high. Trial registration: identifier: ISRCTN20474555.

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:Funding: This evaluation of the CBS intervention is supported by ESRC (Economic and Social research Council) under the ‘GCRF New Social and Cultural Insights into Mental, Neurological and Substance Use Disorders in Developing Countries’ funding call. Grant number (ES/S000976/1).
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Robinson, Professor Jude
Authors: Kagabo, D. M., Bangirana, P., Burnside, G., Chiumento, A., Duarte, R., Gishoma, D., Girvan, M., Jansen, A., Jansen, S., Kasujja, R., Lubunga, R., Nevitt, S., Nzaramba, L., Sarabwe, E., Jackson, C., Rahman, A., Richters, A., Robinson, J., Rutayisire, T., Ventevogel, P., and White, R. G.
College/School:College of Social Sciences > School of Social and Political Sciences > Sociology Anthropology and Applied Social Sciences
Journal Name:European Journal of Psychotraumatology
Publisher:Taylor & Francis
ISSN (Online):2000-8066
Published Online:20 January 2023
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2023 The Author(s)
First Published:First published in European Journal of Psychotraumatology 14(1):2151281
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons license

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