Provider perspectives on choosing prolonged exposure of cognitive processing therapy for PTSD: A national investigation of VA residential treatment providers.

As part of a longitudinal mixed-methods investigation on implementation of 2 evidence-based psychotherapies (EBPs) for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder, 164 mental health providers from 38 Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) residential treatment programs across the United States were asked questions about their decision making for using Prolonged Exposure and Cognitive Processing Therapy. Many providers viewed both EBPs as equally efficacious and encouraged veterans to decide for themselves which treatment they wished to engage in. Some providers said that it was hard to know which EBP would be the most effective for a given patient, and that occasionally they started work with a veteran thinking that a particular EBP would work and were surprised when the veteran did not receive the full potential benefit of the intervention. Other providers noted that their decision making regarding which EBP to use depended on the type and nature of the veterans’ index trauma, memory of the trauma, and traumatic stress symptoms (e.g., fear vs. guilt). Additional factors that impacted the choice of EBP included whether the patient already had one of the treatments before or if a provider deemed one as more compatible with their previous training. Implications for clinical practice as well as the design and improvement of training and implementation efforts are discussed. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2019 APA, all rights reserved)