Date of Graduation


Document Type

Problem/Project Report

Degree Type



School of Nursing


Family/Community Health

Committee Chair

Kendra Barker

Committee Co-Chair

Amy Ankrom


Many individuals receiving care at a predominantly free primary health care clinic in the northern part of West Virginia are experiencing depression, and medication therapy is the most common form of management with limited resources for psychosocial treatment. Brief psychosocial therapy interventions provided by the primary care provider should be explored as an adjunct treatment for this population in the primary care setting.

A pilot study was conducted to explore the integration of behavioral activation, a brief psychosocial intervention focused on decreasing depressed behavior by increasing nondepressed behavior to reinforce corresponding improvements in mood. Eligible patients were invited to attend five sessions once for five weeks. Visits were conducted according to the revised manual for Behavioral Activation Treatment for Depression. Data collection included measurements for adherence to treatment, PHQ-9, and BADS scores.

Three primary aims were evaluated for this project: 1) To assess the feasibility of implementing this intervention in this clinic population; 2) To decrease overall PHQ-9 scores and increase overall BADS scores; and 3) To increase medication adherence in conjunction with a psychosocial intervention.

The feasibility evaluation of this project was performed according to Bowen’s feasibility criteria and showed mixed results. Data suggests there was no statistically significant difference in depressive symptoms or daily functioning but minor improvements were noted, indicating potential clinical significance. Limitations of this study included low patient enrollment and the COVID-19 pandemic. Future research could include implementation of this intervention in an integrated care center, larger clinic, or with a different clinic population.