Publication date: Mar 20, 2020
Even in Western health care systems, most people with mental disorders, including those with severe and chronic disorders, are treated solely by their general practitioner (GP). Notably, the accessibility of mental health specialist care is mainly complicated by (a) long waiting times for specialists, (b) long travel distances to specialists, particularly in rural and remote areas, (c) patients’ reservations about mental health specialist care (including fear of being stigmatised by seeking such care). To mitigate those barriers, technology-based integrated care models have been proposed. The purpose of this study is to measure the effectiveness of a mental health specialist video consultations model versus treatment as usual in patients with depression or anxiety disorders in primary care. In an individually randomized, prospective, two-arm superiority study with parallel group design, N = 320 patients with anxiety and/or depressive disorder will be recruited in GP practices.