Post Operational Screening Trial (POST)
Principal Investigators: Professor Roberto Rona and
Professor Neil Greenberg
Study Co-ordinator: Melanie Chesnokov
Research Fieldworkers: Philip Barnes and Kevin Green MBE
Research Assistant: Howard Burdett
This study aims to find out if screening for mental health disorders in the Armed Forces would be effective to decrease the prevalence for PTSD, depression, anxiety and alcohol misuse by helping troops who have recently returned from deployment seek appropriate care for mental health disorders, if needed.
The study is a cluster randomised controlled trial that includes two arms: an intervention arm and a control arm. Members of the selected platoons were asked to complete a short computer offline questionnaire between October 2011 and February 2013. The questionnaire included questions on PTSD, depression, anxiety and alcohol misuse. Those in the intervention arm received tailored advice related to their responses to the questionnaire. Participants were reassessed between 10 and 24 months after the initial evaluation to assess any differences in mental illness between the intervention and the control arms of the study. The study was fully approved by the Ministry of Defence (MoD) and has gained ethical clearance from King’s College London, the MoD and the US Army Medical Research and Materiel Command (funding agency).
The study aims to recruited British Army and Royal Marines personnel shortly after they return from deployment in Afghanistan. The study finished data collection in October 2014 and analysis of the data is currently being carried out.
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