Providers’ Experiences with Delivering School‑Based Targeted Prevention for Adolescents with Anxiety Symptoms: A Qualitative Study
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionSchool Mental Health. 2020, 12, 757–770. 10.1007/s12310-020-09382-x
The school setting is important for delivering targeted prevention to adolescents with anxiety. However, schools may not have available providers with training or experience in delivering evidence-based interventions, e.g., school psychologists. Training providers available in the schools, e.g., school nurses, is important. Further, to investigate their experiences in delivering targeted prevention to adolescents with anxiety could help understand factors promoting implementation success. A qualitative study including focus groups with providers of school-based targeted prevention cognitive-behavioral therapy for anxiety in adolescents was conducted. Focus group interviews were audiotaped and transcribed verbatim. Systematic Text Condensation, a method for thematic cross-case analysis was used. The Active Implementation Framework (AIF) was used to contextualize the results. Seventeen providers participated in the study. They reported several facilitators contributing to successful implementation: Their feeling of competence in delivering the interventions were built through skills-based training, supervision, and collegial support. Conducting initial assessment of each adolescent helped the providers individualize the interventions. Seeing positive outcomes in adolescents gave the providers motivation to continue implementation. Further, collaborating with teachers facilitated both recruitment of adolescents and administering group sessions. Minimal leadership-oriented factors were reported. Overall, the findings correspond to some of the drivers in AIF. This study offers providers’ perspectives on implementation of targeted prevention for anxiety in the school setting. Our results show that providers experience mastery in delivery when receiving support, training, and supervision. This seems to be essential facilitators for implementing much needed targeted prevention for youth with anxiety.