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Pilot Feasibility Stud. 2017 Nov 21;3:63. doi: 10.1186/s40814-017-0206-z. eCollection 2017.

Caring for Caregivers (C4C): study protocol for a pilot feasibility randomised control trial of Positive Written Disclosure for older adult caregivers of people with psychosis.

Author information

Department of Primary Care and Public Health, Brighton and Sussex Medical School, Mayfield House, Village Way, Falmer, BN1 9PH UK.
Department of Clinical Medicine, Royal Alexandra Children's Hospital, University of Sussex, Eastern Road, Brighton, BN2 5BE UK.
Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, Research and Development Department, Sussex Education Centre, Nevill Avenue, Hove, BN3 7HZ UK.
School of Psychology, University of Leeds, Leeds, LS2 9JT UK.
The McPin Foundation, 32-36 Loman Street, London, SE1 0EH UK.
Family Medicine and Primary Care, Lee Kong Chian School of Medicine, Nanyang Technological University, Novena Campus, 11 Mandalay Road, Singapore, 308232 Singapore.



The caregivers of people who experience psychosis are themselves at risk of developing physical and mental health problems. This risk is increased for older adult caregivers who also have to manage the lifestyle and health changes associated with ageing. As a consequence, older adult caregivers are in particular need of support; we propose a Written Emotional Disclosure (WED) intervention, called Positive Written Disclosure (PWD).


This is a pilot randomised controlled trial of PWD compared to a neutral writing control and a no writing condition. We aim to recruit 60 participants, 20 in each arm. This study will utilise a mixed-methods approach and collect quantitative (questionnaires) and qualitative (interviews) data. Quantitative data will be collected at baseline and 1, 3, and 6 months post baseline. Participants who complete a writing task (PWD or neutral writing control) will be invited to complete an exit interview to discuss their experiences of the intervention and study. The study is supported by a patient and public involvement group.


The results of this trial will determine whether a definitive trial is justified. If so, the quantitative and qualitative findings will be used to refine the intervention and study protocols.

Trial registration:

ISRCTN, ISRCTN79116352. Registered on 23 January 2017.


Caregiver; Carer; Older adult; Positive written disclosure; Psychosis; RCT; Written emotional disclosure

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