Category: Couples / Close Relationships


Delivery of Structured Approach Therapy Into the-Home via Clinical Video Technology: A Pilot Study

Friday, November 17
12:00 PM - 1:30 PM
Location: Aqua Salon E & F, Level 3, Aqua Level

Keywords: PTSD Posttraumatic Stress Disorder | Veterans | Couple Therapy
Presentation Type: Symposium

Treatment access is a critical problem in the VA; busy returning veterans who may live long distances from VA clinics are often reluctant/unable to seek help.   We recently conducted randomized controlled trial of a 12-session manualized clinic-based couple-based PTSD intervention called Structured Approach Therapy (SAT) developed especially for returning Veterans and their partners (Sautter, Glynn, Becker-Cretu, Senturk, & Vaught, 2015), showing that veterans receiving SAT show significantly greater reductions in PTSD and relationship maladjustment than veterans receiving PTSD Family Education.  To address access issues, we have conducted a pilot effectiveness trial to determine whether Clinical Video Technology (CVT) can be used to provide SAT to veterans in their homes while maintaining the efficacy of the clinic-based SAT program. Twenty-one returning veterans with PTSD and their intimate partners were invited to connect with their SAT clinician using current VA CVT technology. This pilot investigation employed a hybrid efficacy/effectiveness design to investigate: (1) whether SAT-CVT was accepted by couples when provided in their home over a computer, (2) whether couples participating in SAT-CVT would show significant reductions in PTSD and other trauma-related problems, and (3) to learn about the couples’ perceptions of the advantages and disadvantages of this home-based version of SAT.   Nineteen of the twenty-one couples enrolled were eligible for CVT treatment and participated in the pretreatment assessment and sixteen of the nineteen participated in at least one session of CVT. Four couples discontinued treatment prior to completion of six sessions. Twelve of the sixteen couples that initiated SAT CVT completed the twelve-session intervention. Quantitative and qualitative data indicate SAT provided through distance modalities was acceptable, and even preferable to veterans with PTSD and their partner; the unique challenges of using internet technologies to administer evidence-based interventions to couples will be highlighted. Preliminary analyses of outcome data collected from the first eight couples that completed SAT* prior to the completion of the investigation show that 87.5% of the veterans no longer met criteria for PTSD with significant reductions in both CAPS (pand PCL (pp=.02*) and their partners (p=.02*), in addition to significant reductions in depressive symptoms in both veterans (pp<.04*). This presentation will present the statistical analyses from this now completed study describing and discussing data collected from the entire sample of participants.

Julia Cretu

Southeast Louisiana Veterans Health Care System


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Delivery of Structured Approach Therapy Into the-Home via Clinical Video Technology: A Pilot Study

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