Methods: Over 1600 patients admitted after index admission for Acute Coronary Syndrome (ACS) are being screened for depression at six metropolitan hospitals in the Australian states of Victoria and Queensland. Consenting participants are then contacted at two weeks post-discharge for baseline assessment. One hundred eligible participants are to be randomised to an intervention or a usual medical care control group (50 per group). The intervention consists of up to 10 × 30-40 minute structured telephone sessions, delivered by registered psychologists, commencing within two weeks of baseline screening. The intervention focuses on depression management, lifestyle factors (physical activity, healthy eating, smoking cessation, alcohol intake), medication adherence and managing co-morbidities. Data collection occurs at baseline (Time 1), 6 months (post-intervention) (Time 2), 12 months (Time 3) and 24 months follow-up for longer term effects (Time 4). We are comparing depression (Cardiac Depression Scale [CDS]) and HRQOL (Short Form-12 [SF-12]) scores between treatment and UC groups, assessing the feasibility of the program through patient acceptability and exploring long term maintenance effects. A cost-effectiveness analysis of the costs and outcomes for patients in the intervention and control groups is being conducted from the perspective of health care costs to the government.
Discussion: This manuscript presents the protocol for a randomised, multi-centre trial to evaluate the feasibility of a tele-based depression management and CHD secondary prevention program for ACS patients. The results of this trial will provide valuable new information about potential psychological and wellbeing benefits, cost-effectiveness and acceptability of an innovative tele-based depression management and secondary prevention program for CHD patients experiencing depression.
Trial Registration Number: Australia and New Zealand Clinical Trials Register (ANZCTR): ACTRN12609000386235