STOPS: A randomised trial of a Structured Online intervention to Promote and Support antidepressant de-prescribing in primary care

Project Details

Australians take more antidepressants than almost anyone else in the world, and the number of prescriptions continues to rise. This increase stems largely from rising long-term use of antidepressants, which is costly and may pose a number of health risks. Clinical guidelines recommend ceasing antidepressants when they are no longer required, however in practice this is difficult for a range of reasons (e.g., fears of relapse) and both patients and GPs require support to navigate the de-prescribing process. Our team has developed a structured, web-based intervention to address this need. The intervention has been developed and refined with input from GPs and people who have been on long-term antidepressant medication.

The STOPS trial is testing whether this intervention is more effective than usual care in helping long-term antidepressant users to cease their medication while maintaining good mental health. The results of this trial have the potential to assist the growing number of Australians who take antidepressants unnecessarily to safely and successfully cease their antidepressant with the help of their doctor, when the timing is right for them.

Researchers

Prof Jane Gunn, Lead Investigator
The Department of General Practice, Melbourne Medical School, Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences (University of Melbourne)

Dr Susan Fletcher
The Department of General Practice, Melbourne Medical School, Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences (University of Melbourne)

Professor Chee Ng
The Department of Psychiatry, Melbourne Medical School, Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences. University of Melbourne

Dr Patty Chondros, Biostatistician
The Department of General Practice, Melbourne Medical School, Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences.  The University of Melbourne

Professor Derelie Mangin
Department of Family Practice, McMaster University

Collaborators

Professor Cathrine Mihalopoulos
Deakin Health Economics Unit, Faculty of Health, Deakin University

Professor Daniel Hoyer
The Department of Pharmacology, School of Biomedical Sciences, The University of Melbourne

A/Prof Douglas Boyle
The Department of General Practice, Melbourne Medical School, Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences.  The University of Melbourne

Professor Jill Klein
Melbourne Business School, The University of Melbourne

Professor Malcolm Hopwood
The Department of Psychiatry, Melbourne Medical School, Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences.  The University of Melbourne

Professor Tony Kendrick
Faculty of Medicine, University of Southampton

Funding

The STOPS Trial is funded by a NHMRC Project Grant (2019)

This RCT builds on pilot research that was supported by the following funding schemes:

Therapeutic Guidelines Ltd (TGL)/RACGP Research Grant 2016 and
https://www1.racgp.org.au/newsgp/professional/ongoing-research-aims-to-reduce-antidepressant-use

2018 Melbourne Research Grant Support Scheme (University of Melbourne)

Research Group

Integrated Mental Health




Key Contact

For further information about this research, please contact the research group leader.

Department / Centre

General Practice

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