Condition category
Mental and Behavioural Disorders
Date applied
16/01/2007
Date assigned
05/03/2007
Last edited
26/10/2009
Prospective/Retrospective
Retrospectively registered
Overall trial status
Completed
Recruitment status
No longer recruiting

Plain English Summary

Not provided at time of registration

Trial website

Contact information

Type

Scientific

Primary contact

Mr Daniel Costin

ORCID ID

Contact details

Centre for Mental Health Research
Building 63
The Australian National University
Canberra ACT
0200
Australia
+61 (0)2 6125 2741
Daniel.Costin@anu.edu.au

Additional identifiers

EudraCT number

ClinicalTrials.gov number

Protocol/serial number

N/A

Study information

Scientific title

Acronym

Study hypothesis

Hypotheses about the effect of the interventions on mental health literacy:
1. Participants who receive depression information interventions will form less stigmatising attitudes towards depression and more positive beliefs about the helpfulness of evidence based treatments and health professionals who provide these treatments
2. Participants who receive depression information interventions will report a greater knowledge of the types of treatment that GPs and mental health professionals provide for depression and what to expect at an initial consultation
3. The effect seen in hypothesis 2 will be strongest in participants who receive the enhanced depression information intervention. This intervention includes practical advice about how to make contact with these health professionals and what to expect at the initial consultation.
4. Participants who receive depression information interventions will be more likely to report knowledge of an Australian website that has good information about depression and its treatment

Hypotheses about the effect of the interventions on help seeking behaviour:
5. The depression information interventions will modify help seeking behaviour in participants with elevated levels of depression. Specifically, at post-intervention follow-up, these participants will be more likely to report that they recently sought help for feelings of depression from their GP or a mental health professional and less likely to have sought help from informal sources
6. The study also tests the hypothesis that young adults go through particular stages of behavioural change before seeking professional help for depression; and investigates whether movement through these stages is related to informational content of the depression interventions

Hypotheses about the effect of the interventions on helping behaviour:
7. The study will also investigate whether the depression information interventions have an effect on participant’s helping behaviour towards friends who are experiencing depression

Ethics approval

Ethics approval received from the Human Research Ethics Committee of the Australian National University on the 2nd November 2006 (ref: 2006/247).

Study design

Randomised controlled trial

Primary study design

Interventional

Secondary study design

Randomised controlled trial

Trial setting

Not specified

Trial type

Quality of life

Patient information sheet

Condition

Depression

Intervention

Two versions of the depression information interventions (basic and enhanced) will be compared to a control intervention. Participants who receive the depression information interventions receive a series of three weekly e-mails containing information about depression; its treatment; health professionals who provide these treatments; and resources for further information. The enhanced intervention contains more detailed information and also addresses ambivalence towards seeking professional help.

Participants in the control intervention receive a series of three weekly e-mails containing information about Meningococcal disease, amphetamines, and Gamma-hydroxyburate (GHB).

Contact details of Principal Investigator:
Prof Helen Christensen
Centre for Mental Health Research
Building 63
The Australian National University
Canberra ACT, 0200
Australia

Intervention type

Other

Phase

Not Specified

Drug names

Primary outcome measures

Help seeking behaviour for feelings of depression.

Secondary outcome measures

Mental health literacy outcomes:
1. Recognition of depression
2. Beliefs about the helpfulness of supportive counselling, cognitive behavioural therapy, interpersonal psychotherapy and anti-depressants for young adults with depression
3. Beliefs about the helpfulness of various people (including professionals and non-professionals) for young adults with depression
4. Depression stigma directed toward the self (self stigma)
5. Self-reported knowledge of processes involved in seeking help for depression from different health professionals
6. Self-reported knowledge about the types of help/treatments for depression provided by different health professionals and what to expect at an initial consultation
7. Self-reported knowledge of "an Australian website that has good information about depression and it’s treatment"

Helping behaviour outcomes:
Referral of depressed peers to a GP or mental health professional.

Other help seeking intentions and behaviour outcomes:
Stage of change for the behaviour of seeking professional help for feelings of depression.

Mental health status outcomes:
Self reported symptoms of depression.

Overall trial start date

05/02/2007

Overall trial end date

30/06/2007

Reason abandoned

Eligibility

Participant inclusion criteria

1. Aged 19 - 23 years
2. Report that they use e-mail in a screening questionnaire and provide researchers with their first name and e-mail address
3. Be willing to participate in the trial

Participant type

Patient

Age group

Adult

Gender

Both

Target number of participants

900

Participant exclusion criteria

For ethical reasons, participants will be excluded from participating in the trial if they obtain the maximum score on a psychological distress scale included in the screening questionnaire (indicating that they are likely to be severely depressed)

Recruitment start date

05/02/2007

Recruitment end date

30/06/2007

Locations

Countries of recruitment

Australia

Trial participating centre

Centre for Mental Health Research
Canberra ACT
0200
Australia

Sponsor information

Organisation

Centre for Mental Health Research, Australian National University (Australia)

Sponsor details

Building 63
Canberra ACT
0200
Australia
+61 (0)2 6125 2741
cmhr@anu.edu.au

Sponsor type

University/education

Website

http://www.anu.edu.au/cmhr

Funders

Funder type

University/education

Funder name

Centre for Mental Health Research, Australian National University (Australia)

Alternative name(s)

Funding Body Type

Funding Body Subtype

Location

Results and Publications

Publication and dissemination plan

Not provided at time of registration

Intention to publish date

Participant level data

Not provided at time of registration

Results - basic reporting

Publication summary

2009 results in http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19850549

Publication citations

  1. Results

    Costin DL, Mackinnon AJ, Griffiths KM, Batterham PJ, Bennett AJ, Bennett K, Christensen H, Health e-cards as a means of encouraging help seeking for depression among young adults: randomized controlled trial., J. Med. Internet Res., 2009, 11, 4, e42, doi: 10.2196/jmir.1294.

Additional files

Editorial Notes