A1 Journal article (refereed)
Supported Web-Based Acceptance and Commitment Therapy for Older Family Caregivers (CareACT) Compared to Usual Care (2022)

Lappalainen, P., Pakkala, I., Lappalainen, R., & Nikander, R. (2022). Supported Web-Based Acceptance and Commitment Therapy for Older Family Caregivers (CareACT) Compared to Usual Care. Clinical Gerontologist, 45(4), 939-955. https://doi.org/10.1080/07317115.2021.1912239

JYU authors or editors

Publication details

All authors or editors: Lappalainen, Päivi; Pakkala, Inka; Lappalainen, Raimo; Nikander, Riku

Journal or series: Clinical Gerontologist

ISSN: 0731-7115

eISSN: 1545-2301

Publication year: 2022

Publication date: 15/04/2021

Volume: 45

Issue number: 4

Pages range: 939-955

Publisher: Routledge

Publication country: United States

Publication language: English

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/07317115.2021.1912239

Publication open access: Openly available

Publication channel open access: Partially open access channel

Publication is parallel published (JYX): https://jyx.jyu.fi/handle/123456789/75121


Objectives: The objective of the present study was to investigate whether an acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT)-based web-intervention (Group 1, CareACT), or a standardized rehabilitation in a rehabilitation center (Group 2) was effective in enhancing the psychological well-being of family caregivers aged 60 and over compared to support provided by voluntary caregiver associations (Group 3).

Methods: Altogether, 149 family caregivers participated in this quasi-experimental study. Primary outcome measure was depression. Secondary outcomes included anxiety, sense of coherence, quality of life, psychological flexibility, experiential avoidance, and thought suppression. The questionnaires were administered at baseline, and four, and 10 months post-measurement. We investigated differences in the changes between the groups using Mplus modeling techniques.

Results: Regarding the main outcome of depression, the results suggest that the CareACT intervention was superior to standardized rehabilitation and to the support given by caregiver associations at four months, both showing a medium-sized difference between the groups. However, the change from four to 10 months post-intervention was not significantly different between these groups (d = 0.32–0.36). Thought suppression showed a significantly different change between the three groups from baseline to four months and to 10 months post-measurement (p = .038).

Conclusions: Web-based ACT may have beneficial effects on depressive symptoms and thought suppression in older caregivers.

Clinical implications: Web-based ACT could be a feasible alternative to institutional rehabilitation and support provided by voluntary caregiver associations. Web-based ACT responds flexibly to the needs of caregivers and provides them an opportunity for learning new skills to promote well-being.

Keywords: older people; family caregivers; mental well-being; depression (mental disorders); quality of life; acceptance and commitment therapy; rehabilitation

Free keywords: family caregivers; community-dwelling older adults; rehabilitation; psychological well-being; depression; thought suppression; quality of life; online; web-based; acceptance and commitment therapy

Contributing organizations

Ministry reporting: Yes

Reporting Year: 2022

Preliminary JUFO rating: 1

Last updated on 2022-20-09 at 14:47