ACBS Spotlight: Recent Grant Activity

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There are new grants hitting all over the world in the ACT/RFT arena. Today I want to point out two recently awarded grants that we know about.

  • Andrew Gloster has been awarded a grant from the German government. The title of the project is (paraphrased from the German): What Should We Do When CBT for Panic/Agoraphobia Fails: ACT! The goal is to test whether ACT can help those patients who are categorized as non-responders following an intense course of CBT.
  • A grant from Guys' and St Thomas Charity, UK entitled Evaluating Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) for Psychosis in Community Settings. The investigators are: Louise Johns, Joe Oliver, Majella Byrne, Til Wykes & Tom Craig from South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust & Institute of Psychiatry, King's College London.

    Description of the study:

    This study aims to evaluate the transferability of ACT from the USA to routine mental health services in the UK, in terms of feasibility, acceptability, and clinical outcomes. ACT for psychosis has been piloted in a group format in Scotland and London, with anecdotal reports that clients find the approach beneficial, but no formal evaluations have been conducted. We hypothesise that service users who attend an ACT group will show improvements in daily functioning, mood, and relationship with symptoms (willingness to experience symptoms, distancing from symptoms, and their choices and actions less influenced by symptoms). We will use a waiting list control design with repeated measures (Wykes et al., 1999). Outcome measures will be administered at: referral (week 0); pre-intervention (week 4); post-intervention (week 8); 6-week follow-up (week 14); 12-week follow-up (week 20). Outcome measures will include ratings of functioning, distress, mindfulness and acceptance, and valued actions.

    Individuals will be recruited from three clinical services in Lambeth (a London Borough): Social Inclusion Hope And Recovery Project (SHARP), Lambeth Early Onset Service (LEO) and Outreach And Support In South London (OASIS). These teams work with clients with chronic psychosis, first episode psychosis and those at high risk of developing psychosis, respectively. All the clients experience prominent cognitive intrusions, in the form of negative thoughts, worries, delusional ideas, voices or other hallucinations. The tendency to struggle with these internal experiences is common to all clients, irrespective of the stage of psychosis. Clients will be recruited who are distressed by their experiences and who have tried unsuccessfully to manage them at the expense of pursuing valued activities in their life.The psychologists in each service (SHARP, LEO, OASIS) will run an ACT group for their clients (N = 6 in each group), which will comprise four weekly 2-hour workshops, using materials that have previously been used and evaluated. The two larger services (SHARP and LEO) will then run the group a further three times, and OASIS will run their group a further two times, giving a total of 11 groups across the three clinical services.

    We'll keep you posted as these grants progress and results become available. Congratulations to the awardees!