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Psychol Psychother. 2009 Mar;82(Pt 1):57-72. doi: 10.1348/147608308X336100. Epub 2008 Aug 28.

Evaluating a cognitive analytic therapy service; practice-based outcomes and comparisons with person-centred and cognitive-behavioural therapies.

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  • 1Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust, University of Sheffield, Sheffield, UK.



Evaluations of the clinical effectiveness of cognitive analytic therapy (CAT) are scarce and therefore represent an urgent service and research need. This paper sought to evaluate a CAT service by profiling CAT clients, examining the outcomes achieved by the CAT service and also comparing such outcomes with those achieved by other services, namely the person-centred service and the cognitive-behavioural service.


Patients in routine practice were matched according to the amount of therapy time received (either brief or medium-term contracts) and the degree of initial presenting psychological distress.


Patients completed a variety of validated scales of psychological functioning (Beck Depression Inventory-II (BDI-II), Brief Symptom Inventory (BSI), and Inventory of Interpersonal Problems (IIP-32)) at assessment and termination of psychological intervention.


The results indicate broad similarities between the outcomes achieved by the services, with rates of clinically significant improvement comparable, in the main, across the three services.


The results are discussed in terms of (a) the service delivery implications and (b) future indicated pragmatic research and evaluation efforts.

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