For adults with depression, CBT delivered over the phone is as effective at reducing symptoms as CBT delivered face to face. Two trials looking at CBT for obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) – one in adults and one in young people – also found no differences in effectiveness. Telephone treatment is cost-effective too: the improvements in quality of life represent good value for money, broadly comparable with face-to-face therapy.

People who receive telephone-delivered therapy are happy to have treatment that way. One interview study looking at depression and anxiety, for example, found that most people were broadly content with it, particularly saying how convenient it was. The trial of CBT for OCD in adults, discussed above, also found comparable and high levels of satisfaction with treatment delivery in either manner.

Post pandemic, it will be essential for health systems to continue to fund phone therapy or zoom therapy as an effective form of therapy for those with psycho-social challenges.

source: AEON magazine Oct 14 2020

Telephone therapy is convenient and it works. Let’s use it more
by Dean McMillan, Penny Bee, Nicky Lidbetter and Beatrice Lukoseviciute

Dean McMillanis professor of clinical psychology at Hull York Medical School and the Department of Health Sciences, University of York.