Mental health conditions such as anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder affect many Australians, often impacting on their health, quality of life and return to work. To optimise the support received by claimants with mental health conditions, compensation bodies rely on research into mental health treatment approaches and strategies. Through its Evidence Review program, ISCRR provides insights from research in this area.

The role of compensation procedures and experiences in pain and mental health after injury Research Summary

Chronic pain and secondary mental health conditions after an injury have an enormous impact on a person’s quality of life. This study aimed to gain an understanding of the factors associated with the development of chronic pain and mental health conditions within the first 12 months following an injury to help identify people at risk of secondary conditions as early as possible to enable early interventions.

Authors: Giummarra, M

Keywords: chronic pain; persistent pain; mental health; psychosocial factors; health-related quality of life

Date published: October 2016

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Effectiveness and application of remote mental health interventions towards compensable injury recovery Research Report

Remote mental health interventions are a developing area of psychological services that have recently gained increased attention in a range of therapeutic treatment settings, including compensable injury settings. This study examined the available evidence surrounding the effectiveness of remote mental health interventions, and their applicability to TAC recovery clients. The review found that remote mental health interventions are relatively new to the compensable injury setting. They appear effective in treating individuals with mild to moderate mental health conditions. For clients with severe mental health conditions, remote mental health interventions may be delivered in adjunct to traditional face-to-face therapy. The most important implementation factors for effective application of remote mental health interventions centre on appropriate pairing of services to client needs.

Authors: Liu, S; Kerr, E; Fitzharris, M; Collie, A

Keywords: mental health; evidence base; health care; compensation system

Date published: September 2013

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Comparative effectiveness of counselling providers with different qualifications Evidence Review

People affected by trauma can experience on going mental health symptoms. Counselling is one form of treatment that aims to help people better cope with their experience of trauma and the resulting symptoms. This review examined the impact of counsellor qualifications on patient outcomes. This review found that there was not enough evidence to support that qualifications impacted client outcomes.

Authors: Donoghue, E; Dodge, N

Keywords: mental health; health care; evidence base

Date published: August 2013

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Repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) for depression Evidence Review

Repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation is a relatively new technique similar to Electroconvulsive Therapy where a magnetic pulse is used to stimulate the brain instead of electroconvulsions. The advantage of Repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation over Electroconvulsive Therapy is that the patients do not need to be put under anaesthetic to have the therapy administered. This evidence review could not determine the clinical effectiveness of Repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation for the treatment of depression. More quality studies of Repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation for the treatment of depression are needed.

Authors: Clavisi, O; Donoghue, E; Dodge, N; Wasiak, J

Keywords: mental health; evidence base; best practice

Date published: March 2013

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Art Therapy Evidence Review

Sometimes art therapy is used with people who have been through trauma. An art therapist will help a person to make art related to their memories of the trauma, with the intention of getting the images out of their head and trying to help them to work out their feelings and thoughts related to the trauma. Overall there is insufficient evidence to determine the effectiveness of art therapy for individuals following trauma.

Authors: Donoghue, E; Piccenna, L

Keywords: mental health; rehabilitation; post-traumatic stress disorder

Date published: March 2012

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Benzodiazepines for anxiety: Summary of systematic reviews Evidence Review

This systematic review was a review of already published systematic reviews to determine the clinical effectiveness of Benzodiazepines in the treatment of generalised anxiety disorder post-injury. The systematic reviews included 41 clinical trials of five different types of Benzodiazepines registered for use in Australia. The review found inconsistencies with reference to the effectiveness of the use of Benzodiazepines in the treatment of anxiety, as well as some potential harms in their use. Researchers concluded that the published scientific evidence of clinical effectiveness available in 2011 for the use of Benzodiazepines for the treatment of anxiety is inconsistent and firm conclusions cannot be drawn.

Authors: Donoghue, E; Ait Ouakrim, D

Keywords: mental health; medication; evidence base

Date published: June 2011

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Hypnosedatives for anxiety, insomnia and muscle spasm Evidence Review

The aim of this work is to provide an evidence map of the existing high level studies on the benefits and harms of hypnosedatives for anxiety, insomnia and muscle spasm. The drugs included under the title of ‘hypnosedatives’ were: benzodiazepines (alprazolam, bromazepam, clobazam, diazepam, flunitrazepam, lorazepam, midazolam, nitrazepam, oxazepam, temazepam, triazolam) and non‐benzodiazpine hypnotics (zolpidem, zopiclone).

Authors: Donoghue, E; Ouakrim, D

Keywords: mental health; medication; side effect

Date published: May 2010

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