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COBRA (Cost and Outcome of BehaviouRal Activation): A Randomised Controlled Trial of Behavioural Activation versus Cognitive Behavioural Therapy

Clinical depression is one of the most common and debilitating of the psychiatric disorders. It accounts for the greatest burden of disease among all mental health problems. COBRA is a randomised controlled clinical trial of two psychological interventions – Behavioural Activation (BA) and Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT).

Although both treatments are known to be helpful for people with depression, CBT is currently recognised as the gold-standard evidence-based psychological treatment recommended for depression by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE). We need to know whether the less costly BA represents a viable first choice of treatment in the management of depression. The COBRA trial will compare the cost and the outcome of the therapies in order to find out which one of the treatments will be most useful for the treatment of depression.


Funder: NIHR HTA
Start date: 01/04/2012
End date: 31/03/2016

Mental Health and Addiction Research in the Department of Health Sciences