Background to the INTERACT trial
The INTERACT programme brings together a large, multi-disciplinary team, including mental health academics and practitioners, human-computer interaction researchers, software engineers and end-users. The first three years of the programme focused on the development of the INTERACT platform. This included work to identify clinically effective components of CBT through (1) building a dataset for a network meta-analysis to identify the effective and acceptable components of CBT: (Lopez-Lopez et al, Psychological Medicine 2019) and (2) a modified Delphi study to identify the most effective components of CBT through a consensus approach: (Taylor et al, Cognitive Behaviour Therapy 2019). This work was complemented by further analyses to evaluate the cost-effectiveness of various components and combinations of CBT in order to inform the development of the intervention. Alongside this, a survey of therapists helped identify the materials most frequently used by therapists delivering CBT for depression: (Tallon et al, Cognitive Behaviour Therapy 2019).
Our aim throughout the development of the platform has been to ensure a positive user experience for both therapist and patient. The process was led by experts in design and human computer interaction working closely with CBT therapists and patients, and software engineers in research IT at the University of Bristol. The programme leads and CBT experts have also been actively involved in this iterative process and with the development of a training package for therapists. In 2018, a pilot study was undertaken recruiting a small number of patients with depression from primary care to ensure that the online platform and materials were acceptable to patients and therapists, and to identify areas for improvement prior to the main trial: (Stawarz et al, CHI Conference paper 2020). Following completion of this work and refinements to the platform, the final version is now ready for evaluation in the large multi-centre INTERACT trial. This work was complemented by further analyses to evaluate the cost-effectiveness of various components and combinations of CBT in order to inform the development of the intervention: (Wu et al, Value in Health 2020).