BRAVE step for Australian-developed online anxiety therapy

September 12, 2012

A ground-breaking approach to treating childhood and adolescent anxiety disorders, based on University of Queensland (UQ) research, will soon be available to families in the UK, US and Europe.

This follows a licence deal struck by UQ's main commercialisation company UniQuest with global online healthcare company CCBT Limited.

The aptly named BRAVE-ONLINE (Brave) , which encourages children and adolescents to be brave in the face of anxiety or concerns that might lead to anxiety, originated from research undertaken within UQ's School of Psychology.

CCBT Limited has licensed the program to complement its existing suite of mental health online services, including FearFighterTM, which is currently the only online anxiety treatment endorsed by the UK's National Institute of Clinical Excellence.

UniQuest Managing Director, David Henderson, said the licensing agreement demonstrated how a commercialisation pathway could make it possible for UQ research to have a profound impact on family life around the world.

" represent the most prevalent reasons why children and adolescents need , so partnering the Brave research team with a world-leading company such as CCBT, which has an established presence within the online healthcare sector, is a major milestone," Mr Henderson said.

Lead researcher, Professor Sue Spence, said as many as two thirds of children who experience anxiety may not be getting the help they need.

"There are various reasons why attending therapy sessions is not possible for these children; however, advances in computer technology have opened up new opportunities for families to access psychological services via the internet," Professor Spence said.

"The research shows that Brave is just as effective for treating anxiety with an online therapist as with face-to-face sessions."

Nicholas Niziolomski, CEO of CCBT Limited, said online cognitive behavioural therapies allowed treatment to be provided to a far greater volume of people, around the clock, and with greater cost effectiveness, but they need to be clinically effective to attract the support of national health services, health insurance providers, healthcare professionals, and community organisations.

"The fact that Brave has the strongest evidence-base of any online anxiety intervention for children in the world was a key factor in our decision to enter into the licensing partnership," Mr Niziolomski said.

"Programs like Brave give families more options for accessing treatment, governments a more cost-effective model for delivering wide-scale services, and healthcare providers more support for achieving positive outcomes for their patients and clients. That's why Brave fits so well with our range of our range of evidence-based treatments and eHealth services."

CCBT Limited has already engaged in trials of Brave with the UK's National Health Service, while a fourth Randomised Control Trial will be starting soon.

About BRAVE-ONLINE

BRAVE ONLINE is designed for children and adolescents experiencing Separation Anxiety Disorder, Social Phobia, Specific Phobia and Generalised Anxiety Disorder. BRAVE is an acronym for the cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT) anxiety management strategies covered in the program: B is for Body signs (detecting physiological symptoms of ); R is for Relax; A is for Activate helpful thoughts; V is for Victory over fears; and E is for Enjoy yourself. While the treatment is generic and consists of identical components for all children, therapists can tailor the program to meet the needs of the individual young person. The program consists of series of sessions for the child or adolescent and their parents over several months. BRAVE–ONLINE is completed by families in their own homes and includes working through a skills-building series of weekly tasks.

Related Stories

Recommended for you

Probing how Americans think about mental life

October 20, 2017
When Stanford researchers asked people to think about the sensations and emotions of inanimate or non-human entities, they got a glimpse into how those people think about mental life.

Itsy bitsy spider: Fear of spiders and snakes is deeply embedded in us

October 19, 2017
Snakes and spiders evoke fear and disgust in many people, even in developed countries where hardly anybody comes into contact with them. Until now, there has been debate about whether this aversion is innate or learnt. Scientists ...

Dutch courage—Alcohol improves foreign language skills

October 18, 2017
A new study published in the Journal of Psychopharmacology, conducted by researchers from the University of Liverpool, Maastricht University and King's College London, shows that bilingual speakers' ability to speak a second ...

Inflamed support cells appear to contribute to some kinds of autism

October 18, 2017
Modeling the interplay between neurons and astrocytes derived from children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), researchers at University of California San Diego School of Medicine, with colleagues in Brazil, say innate ...

Study suggests psychedelic drugs could reduce criminal behavior

October 18, 2017
Classic psychedelics such as psilocybin (often called magic mushrooms), LSD and mescaline (found in peyote) are associated with a decreased likelihood of antisocial criminal behavior, according to new research from investigators ...

Taking probiotics may reduce postnatal depression

October 18, 2017
Researchers from the University of Auckland and Otago have found evidence that a probiotic given in pregnancy can help prevent or treat symptoms of postnatal depression and anxiety.

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.