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Less than half (44.5%) of participants preferred in-person psychotherapy, 25.6% preferred self-guided digital treatment, 19.7% preferred expert-guided digital treatment, and 8.5% peer-supported digital treatment.
Principal themes extracted from qualitative analysis centered on the efficacy of digital treatment, access to digital treatment, concerns about peer-supported care, confidentiality and privacy concerns, preference for in-person treatment, skepticism about self-guided therapy, and the impact of social anxiety on the use of video-chat based care.
Our respondents were equally distributed across urban (51.8%) and rural (48.2%) locales in the U. Approximately half (n = 81, 49.4%) of the respondents had previously received individual in-person psychotherapy from a licensed clinician, and 17.1% (n = 28) had used a mobile app for self-help or self-monitoring of depressive symptoms.
Owing to a survey error, we were not able to accurately determine gender distribution; the survey program failed to populate this variable.
The options of self-guided digital psychotherapy enhanced with peer or expert support were least preferred (8.5% and 19.7% of the sample, respectively).Future development of digital psychotherapy will need to address concerns regarding efficacy, privacy, data security, and methods to enhance motivation to use these treatments.At fault for poor utilization are transportation, time commitment (psychotherapy is typically delivered in weekly, hour-long appointments in a clinician’s office), and supply-side barriers, with too few professionals living in rural areas.Rural-dwelling and racial/ethnic minority (Native American, African American, and Spanish-speaking) respondents were purposively sampled.Participants were asked their preferences for and opinions about four treatment modalities: self-guided digital, peer-supported digital, expert-guided digital, or in-person psychotherapy.
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Participants were asked to select barriers they had previously encountered when considering in-person psychotherapy; the top three barriers endorsed by this sample were cost (48.2%), insurance limitations (26.8%), and stigma (26.2%).