The Treatment Acceptability/Adherence Scale: Moving Beyond the Assessment of Treatment Effectiveness
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It is becoming more broadly recognized that beyond effectiveness, the acceptability of interventions for anxiety disorders is an important consideration for evidence-based practice. Although advances in treatments for anxious psychopathologies have demonstrated that cognitive-behavioural interventions are more desirable than other types of psychotherapy or pharmacotherapy, there continue to be problems with adherence and dropout. It has been suggested that low treatment acceptability may be partially responsible for high dropout rates. Although a number of preliminary investigations in this domain have been conducted, further progress is hampered by the absence of a single self-report measure that assesses both acceptability and anticipated adherence. Therefore, the current paper aimed to test the psychometric properties of the newly developed Treatment Acceptability/Adherence Scale (TAAS). In two studies of brief cognitive-behavioural interventions, the TAAS was administered immediately following the therapy session. In Study 1 (N = 120 non-clinical undergraduates), the therapy included two variants of an exposure-based intervention for contamination fear. In Study 2 (N = 27 individuals with obsessive-compulsive disorder), the therapy was a cognitively based intervention evaluating a novel treatment technique for checking compulsions. Measures of convergent and divergent validity were included. Results demonstrated that the TAAS exhibited sound psychometric properties across the two samples. It is hoped that this measure will help clinicians to predict and intervene when a treatment is not acceptable and/or when the client anticipates poor adherence to it. Furthermore, the TAAS may aid researchers in continuing to improve upon effective interventions for anxiety and related disorders.
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