Effects of religious vs. standard cognitive behavioral therapy on therapeutic alliance: A randomized clinical trial.
BACKGROUND: Treatments that integrate religious clients' beliefs into therapy may enhance the therapeutic alliance (TA) in religious clients. OBJECTIVE: Compare the effects of religiously integrated cognitive behavioral therapy (RCBT) and standard CBT (SCBT) on TA in adults with major depression and chronic medical illness. METHOD: Multi-site randomized controlled trial in 132 participants, of whom 108 (SCBT = 53, RCBT = 55) completed the Revised Helping Alliance Questionnaire (HAQ-II) at 4, 8, and 12 weeks. Trajectory of change in scores over time was compared between groups. RESULTS: HAQ-II score at 4 weeks predicted a decline in depressive symptoms over time independent of treatment group (B = -0.06, SE = 0.02, p = 0.002, n = 108). There was a marginally significant difference in HAQ-II scores at 4 weeks that favored RCBT (p = 0.076); however, the mixed effects model indicated a significant group by time interaction that favored the SCBT group (B = 1.84, SE = 0.90, degrees of freedom = 181, t = 2.04, p = 0.043, d = 0.30). CONCLUSIONS: While RCBT produces a marginally greater improvement in TA initially compared with SCBT, SCBT soon catches up.
Koenig, HG; Pearce, M; Nelson, B; Shaw, S; Robins, C; Daher, N; Cohen, HJ; King, MB
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