Outcomes of an online computerized cognitive behavioral treatment program for treating chinese patients with depression: A pilot study

Albert Yeung, Fang Wang, Fan Feng, Jinhua Zhang, Abigail Cooper, Lan Hong, Weidong Wang, Kathleen Griffiths, Kylie Bennett, Anthony Bennett, Jonathan Alpert, Maurizio Fava

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Objective: This pilot study examined the feasibility, safety, and effectiveness of using an online computerized cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) for treating Chinese patients with depression. Methods: Seventy-five Chinese patients with depression in outpatient clinics were randomized into a 5-week intervention. The intervention group received the Chinese translated version of MoodGYM in addition to usual treatment, and the control group continued with usual treatment. Participants completed the 20-item Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale (CES-D) pre- and post-intervention. Results: We conducted multivariate linear regression analyses to compare the change in CES-D scores for completers after the intervention. Seventy-eight percent (n = 29) of participants in the intervention group and 84% (n = 32) of patients in the control group completed the post-treatment assessments, and no serious adverse events were reported. Results indicated that while both groups significantly improved at post test, the intervention group improved significantly more than the control group (t(59) = 2.37, p = 0.02). Conclusion: Computerized CBT can be a cost-effective adjunct to medication treatment, particularly in areas with limited access to mental health services. The use of online computerized CBT has been found to be effective in many studies in Western countries, but has not been studied among Chinese outpatients. This study suggests that online computerized CBT is acceptable, and that MoodGYM is a feasible and efficacious augmentative treatment, specifically when used within an outpatient clinic population. With this small sample size we were able to demonstrate that the addition of MoodGYM to usual care improved treatment outcomes for outpatients with depression in China.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)102-107
Number of pages6
JournalAsian Journal of Psychiatry
StatePublished - Dec 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • Chinese
  • Computerized CBT
  • Depression

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


Dive into the research topics of 'Outcomes of an online computerized cognitive behavioral treatment program for treating chinese patients with depression: A pilot study'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this