The acceptability of an online intervention using positive psychology for depression: A qualitative study.
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Background: Positive psychology interventions may usefully treat depression and can be delivered online to reduce the treatment gap. However, little is known about how acceptable patients find this approach. To address this, the present study interviewed recent users of a positive psychology self-help website. Methods: In-depth semi-structured interviews explored the experiences of twenty-three participants from a larger feasibility study. A stratified purposive sampling strategy selected participants with varying intervention experience according to their intervention logins, as well as varying age, gender and depressive symptoms. Framework analysis was used to explore patterns and linkages within and between participants' accounts. Results: Acceptability varied between participants. Those who found it more acceptable felt it was relevant to their depression and reported feeling empowered by a self-help approach. Conversely, participants for whom it was less acceptable perceived the positive focus irrelevant to their depression and found the emphasis on self-action unsupportive. Conclusions: The acceptability of an online positive psychology intervention may be facilitated by a patients' preference for a psychological focus on the positive. However, patients may also have distinct preferences for online self-help. Future research should investigate the importance of the therapeutic orientation of online self-help interventions and whether patients' preferences for these can be reliably identified. This could help to target online self-help in clinical practice.
AuthorsWalsh, S; Szymczynska, P; Taylor, SJC; Priebe, S
- Centre for Psychiatry