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Papers of the Week

2017 Dec

J Technol Behav Sci



Implementing Video to Home to Increase Access to Evidence-Based Psychotherapy for Rural Veterans.


Lindsay JA, Hudson S, Martin L, Hogan JB, Nessim M, Graves L, Gabriele J, White D
J Technol Behav Sci. 2017 Dec; 2(3-4):140-148.
PMID: 32346604.


This clinical demonstration project used facilitation to implement VA Video to Home (VTH) to deliver evidence-based psychotherapies to underserved rural Veterans, to increase access to mental health care. Participants were Veterans seeking mental health treatment at "Sonny" Montgomery Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Jackson, MS, and/or its six community-based outpatient clinics. Measures included patient encounter and demographic data, patient and provider interviews, reach, effectiveness, adoption, implementation, and maintenance (RE-AIM) factors, measures of fidelity to manualized evidence-based psychotherapies (EBPs), and qualitative interviews. The project was deemed feasible; 93 (67 men, 26 women, including 77 rural, 16 urban) patients received weekly EBPs via VTH. Nearly half were Black 46), 36 of whom (78.3%) were also rural. Fifty-three (48.4%) were Operation Enduring Freedom/Operation Iraqi Freedom Veterans. Ages varied widely, from 20 to 79 years. Primary diagnoses included posttraumatic stress disorder (41), depressive disorders (22), anxiety disorders (nine), insomnia (eight), chronic pain (eight), and substance use disorder (five). Fifteen clinicians were trained to deliver eight EBPs via VTH. Growth in number of Veterans treated by telehealth was 10.12 times and mental health visits were 7.34 times greater than the national annual average of growth for telehealth at VHA facilities. Illustrative examples and qualitative data from both patients and providers suggested overall satisfaction with VTH. This demonstrates the benefits of VTH for increasing access to mental health treatment for rural patients and advantages of an implementation facilitation strategy using an external facilitator. Continuing research should clarify whether certain patients are more likely to participate than others and whether certain EBPs are more easily delivered with VTH than others.