RE-EDITT and Compass

Resource for Electronic Development of Interventions for Talking Therapies in Long-Term Conditions (RE-EDITT) developed online Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) treatment for anxiety and depression in people with long-term conditions. 

The project was led by a group of Clinical Health Psychology researchers at King’s College London, based at Guy’s Hospital. Research shows that around 30% of people with a physical long-term condition (LTC) also experience mental health problems. Research into online tools had found them to be an effective way of delivering CBT, which is the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) recommended treatment for mental health conditions including anxiety and depression, to a wider group of patients.

Penny's story

Caring for your mental health during long-term physical treatment is vital, but what happens when you enter remission? Penny shared how the RE-EDIT tool Compass helped her recognise the importance of her own mental wellbeing on the road after remission.

Pennys story

There are existing tools for delivering online CBT. However, these are not as effective as they could be for those with LTCs because the context of the LTC and lived experience of the patient is often not taken into consideration. The impact of the LTC and factors involved in the psychological adjustment of living with a long-term illness may require specialist support different to that offered for primary mental health issues.

The team reviewed literature on understanding psychological adjustment and distress in LTCs, and tailored current evidence-based CBT treatments for anxiety and depression to be more specific to people with LTCs. Input from an expert advisory panel of people with LTCs and psychologists specialising in treatment for people with LTCs informed key elements of the project. 

To create the website and hosting platform, the team worked with SPIKA, a technical agency which focuses on writing software solutions to create engagement, build relationships, enhance wellbeing and boost performance. The initial programme had been designed as suitable for a range of different LTCs, addressing anxiety and/or depression in the context of having any LTC. Following the initial version, tailored programmes for specific patient populations could be ‘cloned’, for example developing a version of Compass specifically targeted at those with Multiple Sclerosis (MS).

The project worked with colleagues across King’s Health Partners, the Southwark Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT) service and Guy's and St Thomas' psychology services.

The project built a clear pathway for patients to enter treatment by linking with mind and body partners including Integrating Mental & Physical healthcare: Research, Training & Services (IMPARTS), IAPT, clinical health psychology and liaison psychiatry.