Distress Brief Intervention pilot programme: evaluation

This report presents a realist evaluation of the Distress Brief Intervention (DBI) programme. DBI has been successful in offering support to those in distress, and has contributed to peoples’ ability to manage and reduce their distress in the short term, and for some in the longer term.

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1. The Health and Social Care Public Benefit and Privacy Panel is a patient advocacy panel that scrutinises applications for access to NHS Scotland health data for non-direct care. Its role is to ensure that applicants have thought through the public benefit and privacy implications of the proposal. Further information is available at: Who are the public benefit and privacy panel and what do they do?

2. Population estimates taken from Scottish Census 2018, available at Scotland's Population 2018 - The Registrar General's Annual Review of Demographic Trends

3. This evaluation commenced during the original pilot of DBI when the service was targeted at those aged 18 and over and incorporated the extension to those aged 16 and 17 in May 2019 in Lanarkshire and Scottish Borders and July 2019 in Aberdeen and Inverness. There are 147 referrals of individuals aged between 16 and 17 in the aggregate routine DBI level 2 data provided to the evaluation team ( this represents 2.7% of the total for the January 2019 to April 2020 time period).

4. Agreed represents 'slightly agree' and 'strongly agree' responses combined.

5. Disagreed represents 'slightly disagreed' and 'strongly disagreed' responses combined.

6. The Solihull Approach supports mental health and wellbeing in parents, children, schools, older adults and high-stress workplaces through an evidence-based model in training, online courses and resources.

7. Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training (ASIST) is an accredited two day, interactive suicide intervention training programme.

8. As measured by changes in distress thermometer score and CORE-OM 5 score.

9. Those who reported a decrease from moderate or high distress (10 or above on the CORE-OM 5 scale) to low distress (less than 10 on the CORE-OM 5 scale) were more likely to say the 14 days was about right (82%, compared with 66% of those who did not achieve this level of change).

10. As measured by either the distress thermometer or CORE-OM 5.

11. Service names have been removed to protected anonymity.


Email: socialresearch@gov.scot

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