News and Events
Dissertation defense Maaike Ferwerda
Thesis abstract: In this thesis the development
and effectiveness of a tailored guided
internet-based cognitive behavioural therapy is
described for patients with rheumatoid arthrtis.
Patients with a chronic condition such as
rheumatoid arthritis, generally adapt well to
living with their condition after the initial
processing of having a chronic disease. However,
about a third of patients suffer from anxiety or a
depressive mood. Cognitive behavioural therapy has
been shown to be effective in improving outcomes
for these patients. In order to improve the
implementation and efficiency of the intervention,
the internet offers possibilities to reduce both
patient and therapist time and improve the
convenience of the intervention as patients can
choose when and where to spend time on the
The development of the intervention was done in close collaboration with patients and several aspects such as the therapeutic relationship were explored. The internet-based treatment has been shown to be effective to improve psychological outcomes and quality of life. Therefore, implementation of the internet-based tailored therapist guided cognitive behavioural therapy is recommended.
Future research could be aimed at improvement of the intervention by a further exploration of therapist guidance online and tailoring treatments to patients needs.