African Journal of Psychiatry

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Effectiveness of a nurse facilitated cognitive group intervention among mild to moderately-depressed-women in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa

D Chetty, ME Hoque


Objective: The purpose of the study was to determine the effectiveness of a nurse-facilitated-cognitive-group (NFCG) intervention as an adjunct to antidepressant medication, in mild to moderately, depressed women.

Method: This was a quasi-experimental, nonequivalent, control group design study. A sample of 30 consenting participants was selected from an urban, community psychiatric clinic, and the participants were randomly allocated to the control and the intervention groups. The effectiveness of the intervention was measured using the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI). Results: After six weeks of implementation of the NFCG intervention, there
was a decrease in the BDI scores of the intervention group, and an  increase in the BDI scores in the control group (CG) – but the difference in scores was not significant (Student’s t-test=1.076, p=0.291). After 12 weeks of the group intervention, the BDI scores for the intervention group, showed a considerable reduction in their levels of depression, whilst the participants of the control group had a further increase in their scores. There was a statistically significant difference between the groups, with respect to the BDI scores (p<0.001). The Friedman test indicated that the mean BDI scores, were statistically significant (p<0.001) within the  intervention group, meaning that the BDI scores improved, at the end of the intervention for all the participants. Analysis of the BDI scores, using the Friedman test, showed that there was no improvement in the control group (p=0.597).

Conclusion: The NFCG intervention, as an adjunct to antidepressant medication, contributed to a reduction in depressive symptoms.

Keywords: Psychiatric nursing; Psychotherapy, Group; Cognitive Behavior Therapy; South Africa
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