Background: Depression is common among persons with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and is associated with unfavorable outcomes.
Methods: A single-blind randomized controlled effectiveness trial at 3 Veterans Affairs HIV clinics (HIV Translating Initiatives for Depression Into Effective Solutions [HITIDES]). The HITIDES intervention consisted of an off-site HIV depression care team (a registered nurse depression care manager, pharmacist, and psychiatrist) that delivered up to 12 months of collaborative care backed by a Web-based decision support system. Participants who completed the baseline telephone interview were 249 HIV-infected patients with depression, of whom 123 were randomized to the intervention and 126 to usual care. Participant interview data were collected at baseline and at the 6- and 12-month follow-up visits. The primary outcome was depression severity measured using the 20-item Hopkins Symptom Checklist (SCL-20) and reported as treatment response (≥50% decrease in SCL-20 item score), remission (mean SCL-20 item score, <0.5), and depression-free days. Secondary outcomes were health-related quality of life, health status, HIV symptom severity, and antidepressant or HIV medication regimen adherence.
Results: Intervention participants were more likely to report treatment response (33.3% vs 17.5%) (odds ratio, 2.50; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.37-4.56) and remission (22.0% vs 11.9%) (2.25; 1.11-4.54) at 6 months but not 12 months. Intervention participants reported more depression-free days during the 12 months (β = 19.3; 95% CI, 10.9-27.6; P < .001). Significant intervention effects were observed for lowering HIV symptom severity at 6 months (β = -2.6; 95% CI, -3.5 to -1.8; P < .001) and 12 months (β = -0.82; -1.6 to -0.07; P = .03). Intervention effects were not significant for other secondary outcomes.
Conclusion: The HITIDES intervention improved depression and HIV symptom outcomes and may serve as a model for collaborative care interventions in HIV and other specialty physical health care settings where patients find their "medical home."
Trial registration: clinicaltrials.gov Identifier: NCT00304915.