What Is An Evidence-Based Treatment?
At CBT Pinellas, every type of treatment or therapy approach we use is based on some kind of Evidence-Based Treatment or Evidence-Based Model. But….What the heck is an Evidence-Based Treatment?
As the name suggests, Evidence-Based Treatments are particular method of treatments that mental health professionals have performed trials and research on, in order to determine their effectiveness for treating specific disorders, such as Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) or Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT).
Researchers and practitioners gather evidence using several methods, such as analysis of data and observation, in an attempt to paint a more complete evidential picture of the treatment. These levels of evidence are as follows:
- Level I: Evidence gathered from true experimental designs, which usually involves evidence from randomized clinical trials in which researchers can use in their own cases, if applicable.
- Level II: Evidence derived from quasi-experimental designs, which is a more focused level that involves specific and repetitive evidence that is gathered from clinical trials and interventions.
- Level III: Evidence collected from expert consensus, which is evidence gathered from official guidelines and experts, and can be used in absence of real clinical trial evidence.
- Level IV: Evidence recorded from qualitative literature, which can be gathered from various publications and reviews where an author has experienced similar circumstances with a current patient.
- Level V: Anecdotal information, which is normally gathered from various individuals involved with the patient, such as a patient’s friends and loved ones.
Now that we know where the evidence comes from, let’s examine how it’s put into practice! After seeing the benefits of an evidence-based model as it applies to treatment and after assessing the need for a system of standards and benchmarks for an evidence-based treatment model, the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) established the Clinical Trials Network on January 13, 1999, and since this monumental event, the practice of using evidence in the diagnosis and treatment of patients has grown to include previously described 5 Levels of Evidence (Research And Evidence), the expertise of the people providing treatment (Clinician Expertise And Experience), and the study and preferences of the patients (Client And Situation).
In the mental health community, evidence-based treatment is a precise method of zeroing in on the best course of action and treatment for a specific patient, and is used by the best and most qualified agencies, practices, and treatment centers not only to prescribe the best treatment for the patient, but to give everyone involved the peace of mind that the best course of action is being taken based on the latest available evidence. Continued application of evidence-based treatments within the mental health counseling field is growing and is currently considered by the world’s leading experts as the highest standard within the field. At CBT Pinellas, our clinicians provide all of our clients with some type of evidence-based treatment, which is specially tailored to each client’s specific clinical and personal needs.