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Scientific article
Open access
English

Narrative enhancement and cognitive therapy (NECT) to improve social functioning in people with serious mental illness: study protocol for a stepped-wedge cluster randomized controlled trial

Published inTrials, vol. 22, no. 1, 124
Publication date2021-02-08
First online date2021-02-08
Abstract

Background: Self-stigma is highly prevalent in serious mental illness (SMI) and is associated with poorer clinical and functional outcomes. Narrative enhancement and cognitive therapy (NECT) is a group-based intervention combining psychoeducation, cognitive restructuring and story-telling exercises to reduce self-stigma and its impact on recovery-related outcomes. Despite evidence of its effectiveness on self-stigma in schizophrenia-related disorders, it is unclear whether NECT can impact social functioning.

Methods: This is a 12-centre stepped-wedge cluster randomized controlled trial of NECT effectiveness on social functioning in SMI, compared to treatment as usual. One hundred and twenty participants diagnosed with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder or borderline personality disorder will be recruited across the 12 sites. The 12 centres participating to the study will be randomized into two groups: one group (group 1) receiving the intervention at the beginning of the study (T0) and one group (group 2) being a control group for the first 6 months and receiving the intervention after (T1). Outcomes will be compared in both groups at T0 and T1, and 6-month and 12-month outcomes for groups 1 and 2 will be measured without a control group at T2 (to evaluate the stability of the effects over time). Evaluations will be conducted by assessors blind to treatment allocation. The primary outcome is personal and social performance compared across randomization groups. Secondary outcomes include self-stigma, self-esteem, wellbeing, quality of life, illness severity, depressive symptoms and personal recovery.

Discussion: NECT is a promising intervention for reducing self-stigma and improving recovery-related outcomes in SMI. If shown to be effective in this trial, it is likely that NECT will be implemented in psychiatric rehabilitation services with subsequent implications for routine clinical practice.

eng
Keywords
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
  • Humans
  • Quality of Life
  • Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic
  • Social Interaction
  • Social Stigma
  • Treatment Outcome
Citation (ISO format)
DUBREUCQ, J. et al. Narrative enhancement and cognitive therapy (NECT) to improve social functioning in people with serious mental illness: study protocol for a stepped-wedge cluster randomized controlled trial. In: Trials, 2021, vol. 22, n° 1, p. 124. doi: 10.1186/s13063-021-05067-1
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Article (Published version)
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ISSN of the journal1745-6215
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