A Pilot Study of Transdiagnostic Group Cognitive–Behavioral Therapy for Anxiety in a Veteran Sample

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Abstract

High rates of anxiety disorders at Veteran Affairs (VA) health care centers necessitate increased availability of evidence-based treatments for all anxiety disorders. Group-based transdiagnostic cognitive–behavioral therapy (CBT) for anxiety can help to increase the availability of effective treatment for anxiety. The current study examined group-based transdiagnostic CBT for anxiety when implemented in a VA outpatient mental health clinic. Over a 1-year period, 52 veterans with various anxiety disorders completed transdiagnostic group CBT for anxiety. Veterans completing the group treatment reported significant decreases in general distress, anxiety, depression, and individualized fear hierarchy ratings (ps < .01). Additionally, treatment completers reported high satisfaction with the treatment experience. The current study indicates that transdiagnostic group CBT for anxiety can be effectively implemented in a VA outpatient mental health clinic and holds promise for initiatives aimed at broadly increasing the availability of evidence-based treatment for anxiety disorders in VA health care systems.

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