The high prevalence of premature attrition from psychotherapy is a phenomenon which has been well recognized in the psychological literature. The pressing concern that a number of clients may not be benefiting from treatment because they are dropping out has led to a plethora of research in the area of individual psychotherapy. No studies, however, have attempted to investigate the characteristics of dropout in group cognitive behaviour therapy for depression. To address this gap in research, the present study examined the factors associated with dropout in a group cognitive behaviour therapy for depression, using 131 S s who went through the group therapy for 12 weeks. The results showed that sociodemographic measures (e.g. age) and measures of depressive symptoms (e.g. depression scores) did not discriminate dropouts from completers. An investigation of patterns of mood changes in the course of the therapy also failed to find significant differences between the dropouts and completers. However, weekly therapist rating of client participation revealed that dropouts participated significantly less than completers during the therapy sessions. The results are discussed in light of the findings of current literature and future research in premature attrition.
Behaviour Research and Therapy – Elsevier
Published: Nov 1, 1997
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