Depression is one of the commonest yet most debilitating mental health problems. Approximately 80% of sufferers only partially recover, or relapse. Depression must therefore be seen as a relapsing or recurrent condition, which requires long-term management to minimise the impact on people's quality of life. There is evidence that psychological therapies have efficacy for depression, but most trials focus on symptomatic improvement from a single episode. Long-term recovery involves the patient progressing from 'passive victim' of the illness to someone who is in control, able to engage socially, and able to cope with secondary negative effects, including their vulnerability to relapse.
The IQuESTS Project, funded by the NIHR CLAHRC, aims to reduce levels of chronic, recurrent and relapsing depression in South Yorkshire through translating results from clinical trials of psychological treatments for depression to routine NHS conditions, improving self-management, and demonstrating a step change in the quality and effectiveness of NHS psychological services and therapies.
The project consists of 3 work packages, two of which are now complete and the third will run until the end of December 2013.