Publications by authors named "Christian T Moser"

6 Publications

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Stakeholders' views on online interventions to prevent common mental health disorders in adults implemented into existing healthcare systems in Europe.

Eur J Public Health 2021 07;31(31 Suppl 1):i55-i63

Ferdinand Porsche FernFH-Distance Learning University of Applied Sciences, Wiener Neustadt 2700, Austria.

Background: Online preventive interventions can help to reduce the incidence of mental disorders. Whereas knowledge on stakeholders' attitudes and factors relevant for successfully integrating online treatment into existing healthcare systems is available, knowledge is scarce for online prevention.

Methods: Stakeholders from Germany, Switzerland, Austria and Spain were surveyed. Potential facilitators/delivery staff (e.g. psychologists, psychotherapists) completed an online questionnaire (n = 183), policy makers (i.e. from the governing sector or health insurance providers) participated in semi-structured interviews (n = 16) and target groups/potential users of mental illness prevention (n = 49) participated in ten focus groups. Thematic analysis was used to identify their experiences with and attitudes and needs regarding online programmes to prevent mental disorders. Additionally, it was examined which groups they consider underserved and which factors they consider as fostering and hindering for reach, adoption, implementation and maintenance (cf. RE-AIM model) when integrating online prevention into existing healthcare systems.

Results: Main advantages of online mental illness prevention are perceived in low structural and psychological barriers. Lack of personal contact, security, privacy and trust concerns were discussed as disadvantages. Relevant needs are high usability and target group appropriateness, evidence for effectiveness and the use of motivational tools.

Conclusions: Positive attitudes among stakeholders are the key for successful integration of online mental illness prevention into existing healthcare systems. Potential facilitators/delivery staff must receive training and support to implement these programmes; the programmes must be attractive and continuously evaluated, updated and promoted to ensure ongoing reach; and existing infrastructure and contextual factors must be considered.
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July 2021

User Experience and Effects of an Individually Tailored Transdiagnostic Internet-Based and Mobile-Supported Intervention for Anxiety Disorders: Mixed-Methods Study.

J Med Internet Res 2020 09 16;22(9):e16450. Epub 2020 Sep 16.

Clinical, Neuro- & Development Psychology, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Amsterdam, Netherlands.

Background: Internet interventions have been shown to be effective in treating anxiety disorders. Most interventions to date focus on single disorders and disregard potential comorbidities.

Objective: The aim of this mixed-methods study was to investigate feasibility, user experience, and effects of a newly developed individually tailored transdiagnostic guided internet intervention for anxiety disorders.

Methods: This study is an uncontrolled, within-group, baseline, postintervention pilot trial with an embedded qualitative and quantitative process and effect evaluation. In total, 49 adults with anxiety disorders (generalized anxiety disorder n=20, social phobia n=19, agoraphobia without panic n=12, panic with agoraphobia n=6, panic without agoraphobia n=4, subclinical depression n=41) received access to the 7-session intervention. We examined motivation and expectations, intervention use, user experience, impact, and modification requests. Qualitative data were assessed using semistructured interviews and analyzed by qualitative content analysis. Quantitative outcomes included symptom severity of anxiety and depression (Hamilton Anxiety Rating Scale [HAM-A], Quick Item Inventory of Depressive Symptomatology clinician rating [QIDS-C]), diagnostic status in clinical interviews (Mini International Neuropsychiatric Interview [MINI]), and web-based self-reports (Generalized Anxiety Disorder-7 [GAD-7], Center for Epidemiological Studies Depression Scale [CES-D], Beck Anxiety Inventory [BAI], Panic and Agoraphobia Scale [PAS], Social Phobia Scale [SPS], Patient Health Questionnaire-9 [PHQ-9]) at baseline and postassessment. Quantitative data was analyzed by comparing within-group means expressed as Cohen d.

Results: Anxiety symptom severity (HAM-A d=1.19) and depressive symptoms (QIDS-C d=0.42) improved significantly, and 54% (21/39) no longer were diagnosed as having any anxiety disorder. The main positive effects were the general improvement of disease burden and attentiveness to feelings and risk situations while the main negative effects experienced were lack of change in disease burden and symptom deterioration. The most prevalent reasons for participation were the advantages of online treatment, symptom burden, and openness toward online treatment. Helpful factors included support, psychoeducation and practicing strategies in daily life; the main hindering factors were too little individualization and being overwhelmed by the content and pace.

Conclusions: The intervention was found to be feasible and results show preliminary data indicating potential efficacy for improving anxiety and depression. The next step should be the evaluation within a randomized controlled trial. Concerning intervention development, it was found that future interventions should emphasize individualization even more in order to further improve the fit to individual characteristics, preferences, and needs.
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September 2020

An Internet-Based Compassion-Focused Intervention for Increased Self-Criticism: A Randomized Controlled Trial.

Behav Ther 2019 03 17;50(2):430-445. Epub 2018 Aug 17.

University of Bern.

Increased levels of self-criticism and a lack of self-compassion have been associated with the development and maintenance of a range of psychological disorders. In the current study, we tested the efficacy of an online version of a compassion-focused intervention, mindfulness-based compassionate living (MBCL), with guidance on request. A total of 122 self-referred participants with increased levels of self-criticism were randomly assigned to care as usual (CAU) or the intervention group (CAU + online intervention). Primary endpoints were self-reported depressive, anxiety and distress symptoms (DASS-21) and self-compassion (SCS) at 8 weeks. Secondary endpoints were self-criticism, mindfulness, satisfaction with life, fear of self-compassion, self-esteem, and existential shame. At posttreatment, the intervention group showed significant changes with medium to large effect sizes compared to the control group regarding primary outcomes (Cohen's d: 0.79 [DASS] and -1.21 [SCS]) and secondary outcomes (Cohen's ds: between 0.40 and 0.94 in favor of the intervention group). The effects in the intervention group were maintained at 6-months postrandomization. Adherence measures (number of completed modules, self-reported number of completed exercises per week) predicted postintervention scores for self-compassion but not for depressive, anxiety, and distress symptoms in the intervention group. The current study shows the efficacy of an online intervention with a transdiagnostic intervention target on a broad range of measures, including depressive and anxiety symptoms and self-compassion.
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March 2019

Efficacy and cost-effectiveness of guided and unguided internet- and mobile-based indicated transdiagnostic prevention of depression and anxiety (ICare Prevent): A three-armed randomized controlled trial in four European countries.

Internet Interv 2019 Apr 15;16:52-64. Epub 2018 Apr 15.

Department of Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapy, Nägelsbachstraße 25a, Germany.

Background: Depression and anxiety are highly prevalent and often co-occur. Several studies indicate the potential of disorder-specific psychological interventions for the prevention of each of these disorders. To treat comorbidity, transdiagnostic treatment concepts seem to be a promising approach, however, evidence for transdiagnostic concepts of prevention remains inconclusive. Internet- and mobile-based interventions (IMIs) may be an effective means to deliver psychological interventions on a large scale for the prevention of common mental disorders (CMDs) such as depression and anxiety. IMIs have been shown to be effective in treating CMDs, e.g. in reducing symptoms of depression and anxiety. However, there is a lack of studies examining the efficacy of interventions reducing the incidence of CMDs. Moreover, the comparative cost-effectiveness of guided versus unguided IMIs for the prevention of depression and anxiety has not been studied yet. Hence, this study aims at investigating the (cost-) effectiveness of guided and unguided internet- and mobile-based transdiagnostic individually tailored indicated prevention of depression and anxiety.

Methods: A multi-country three-armed randomized controlled trial will be conducted to compare a guided and unguided intervention to treatment as usual (TAU). Both active conditions are based on the same intervention, , and differ only with regard to guidance format. Altogether, 954 individuals with subclinical symptoms of depression (CES-D ≥ 16) and anxiety (GAD-7 ≥ 5) who do not have a full-blown disorder will be recruited in Germany, Switzerland, Spain and the Netherlands, and randomized to one of three conditions (guided intervention, unguided intervention, or TAU). The TAU arm will receive access to the training after a 12-month waiting period. The primary outcome will be time to CMD onset (any depression/anxiety disorder) within a follow-up period of 12 months after baseline. Secondary outcomes will include disorder-specific symptom severity (depression/anxiety) assessed by diagnostic raters blinded to intervention condition at post-intervention, self-reports, acceptability, health related quality of life, and psychosocial variables associated with developing a CMD. Assessments will take place at baseline, mid-intervention (5 weeks into the intervention), post-intervention (8 weeks after randomization) and follow-up (6 and 12 months after randomization). Data will be analyzed on an intention-to-treat basis and per protocol. Cost-effectiveness will be evaluated from a public health and a societal perspective, including both direct and indirect costs.

Discussion: The present study will further enhance the evidence-base for transdiagnostic preventive interventions and provide valuable information about optimal trade-off between treatment outcome and costs.

Trial Registration: German Clinical Trial Registration (DRKS - DRKS00011099.
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April 2019

Transdiagnostic Tailored Internet- and Mobile-Based Guided Treatment for Major Depressive Disorder and Comorbid Anxiety: Study Protocol of a Randomized Controlled Trial.

Front Psychiatry 2018 4;9:274. Epub 2018 Jul 4.

Department of Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapy, Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg, Erlangen, Germany.

Depression is highly prevalent and often accompanied by comorbid anxiety disorder. Internet-based interventions have shown to be one effective treatment modality; however, comorbidities are often not targeted. Transdiagnostic tailored internet-and mobile-based interventions (IMIs) might be promising to overcome such issues. This study aims to evaluate the efficacy, moderators, and cost-effectiveness of a transdiagnostic tailored internet- and mobile-based guided intervention for depression and comorbid anxiety in individuals with major depressive disorder (MDD). Two-hundred participants with MDD will be randomly assigned to an 8-week guided self-help internet intervention (IC) or a 6-month wait-list control group (WLC). Participants of the IC will receive weekly content-focused feedback on module completion as well as monitored adherence reminders from an eCoach. The primary outcome is clinician-rated depression severity (QIDS-C) at post-assessment assessed by diagnostic raters blind to study condition. Secondary outcomes include, e.g., change in diagnostic status (MDD and anxiety disorders), remission and response rates, disorder symptom severity, health related quality of life, incongruence related to needs and values, and behavioral activation. Assessments will take place at baseline (T1), post-assessment (T2), 6-month follow-up (T3), and 12-month follow-up in the IC. Data will be analyzed on an intention-to-treat basis and per protocol. A large number of a priori defined moderators of treatment outcome will be assessed at baseline and tested in predicting treatment outcome. Cost-effectiveness will be evaluated from a societal perspective. The present study will provide evidence on the efficacy, potential cost-effectiveness, and moderators of a transdiagnostic tailored guided internet- and mobile-based treatment protocol.

Trial Registration: German Register of Clinical Studies DRKS00011690 (
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July 2018

Adjustment Disorders Are Uniquely Suited for eHealth Interventions: Concept and Case Study.

JMIR Ment Health 2015 Apr-Jun;2(2):e15. Epub 2015 May 8.

Institute of Psychology Department of Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapy University of Berne Berne Switzerland.

Background: Adjustment disorders (also known as mental distress in response to a stressor) are among the most frequently diagnosed mental disorders in psychiatry and clinical psychology worldwide. They are also commonly diagnosed in clients engaging in deliberate self-harm and in those consulting general practitioners. However, their reputation in research-oriented mental health remains weak since they are largely underresearched. This may change when the International Statistical Classification of Diseases-11 (ICD-11) by the World Health Organization is introduced, including a new conceptualization of adjustment disorders as a stress-response disorder with positively defined core symptoms.

Objective: This paper provides an overview of evidence-based interventions for adjustment disorders.

Methods: We reviewed the new ICD-11 concept of adjustment disorder and discuss the the rationale and case study of an unguided self-help protocol for burglary victims with adjustment disorder, and its possible implementation as an eHealth intervention.

Results: Overall, the treatment with the self-help manual reduced symptoms of adjustment disorder, namely preoccupation and failure to adapt, as well as symptoms of depression, anxiety, and stress.

Conclusions: E-mental health options are considered uniquely suited for offering early intervention after the experiences of stressful life events that potentially trigger adjustment disorders.
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November 2015