My research interest area is treating depression and anxiety in people with a chronic illness or disability. There is a high incidence of depression and chronic illness - 17.5 million people in the UK have long-term health conditions (Department of Health, 2005), 20% also experience comorbid depression (NICE clinical guideline CG91, 2009; Rizzo et al, 2011; Naylor et al, 2012). A chronic health problem can both cause and exacerbate depression and depression adversely affects morbidity and mortality (Sharp et al, 2013).
Government policy papers have recognised the need for improved, integrated and technologically-based care for people with LTCs (Department of Health, 2015) and a systemic review of 35 studies (Rizzo et al, 2011) endorsed the efficacy of CBT in reducing depression for people with comorbid depression and physical health problems. IAPT services, however, can only currently meet 15% of the demand for face-to-face psychological therapies (Eldridge, 2015).
My research aim is primarily to understand the complex needs of people who suffer from a chronic health condition and depression. A preliminary Literature Review has confirmed that there is a lack of both good quality studies and quality guidelines with respect to treatments for depression in people with a chronic illness or LTC. Research findings from my Masters research study revealed the need for such treatment to address psychological themes of loss, denial, identity, social marginalization, isolation and relationship difficulties.
Please feel free to contact me if you need any more information about me or about the talking therapies that I can offer you or my research. It can be difficult to understand the different approaches and therapies and I offer an initial assessment to help you choose the right one for you.
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