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Study protocol: a randomised controlled trial of a telephone delivered social wellbeing and engaged living (SWEL) psychological intervention for disengaged youth

Stain, H.J., Baker, A.L., Jackson, C., Lenroot, R., Paulik, G., Attia, J., Wolfenden, L., Stoyanov, S.R., Devir, H. and Hides, L. (2019) Study protocol: a randomised controlled trial of a telephone delivered social wellbeing and engaged living (SWEL) psychological intervention for disengaged youth. BMC Psychiatry, 19 (1). Article number 136.

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Abstract

Background

Internationally, from 12.2–23.4% of youth (aged 16–24 years) are not in employment, education or training (NEET). These disengaged youth are more likely to experience social exclusion, increased psychological distress and poor quality of life. Youth at risk of disengagement are less likely to access traditional support services, requiring development of innovative interventions.

Methods

The trial is a single blind, three arm, randomised controlled trial evaluating the effectiveness of a telephone delivered psychological intervention for disengaged youth (12–25 years). Participants will be randomised to receive either (i) SWEL, (ii) Befriending, or (iii) Single Session Psycho-Education. Therapy will be over an 8 week period with a minimum of four and maximum of eight sessions for the SWEL or Befriending conditions, or a single session for the Psycho-Education condition. Outcomes will be assessed at baseline and at 2, 8 and 14-month follow-up with the primary outcome being re-engagement in education, training or employment.

Discussion

This large, multi-site, randomised controlled trial will inform the delivery of services for young people at risk of disengaging from education or training. The provision of psychological therapy by telephone increases access by youth – especially those in rural and remote areas - both to the trial and the treatment, if adopted by services. The outcomes of this trial could have meaningful societal impact for a vulnerable population. It is expected that recruitment, intervention and retention will present challenges for the trial given the focus on disengaged youth.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation: School of Psychology and Exercise Science
Publisher: BioMed Central
Copyright: © The Author(s). 2019
United Nations SDGs: Goal 4: Quality Education
Goal 8: Decent Work and Economic Growth
URI: http://researchrepository.murdoch.edu.au/id/eprint/45752
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