A brief cognitive-behavioral psycho-education (B-CBE) program for managing stress and anxiety of main family caregivers of patients in the intensive care unit

Chung Lim Vico Chiang, Wai Tong Chien, Ho Ting Wong, Rainbow Lai Ping Lee, Juana Ha, Sharron Shuk Kam Leung, Daniel Fu Keung Wong

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Having a loved one in the intensive care unit (ICU) is a stressful event, which may cause a high level of anxiety to the family members. This could threaten their wellbeing and ability to support the patients in, or after discharge from, the ICU. To investigate the outcomes of a brief cognitive-behavioral psycho-education program (B-CBE) to manage stress and anxiety of the main family caregivers (MFCs), a pragmatic quasi-experimental study involving 45 participants (treatment group: 24; control group: 21) was conducted in an ICU. The Depression and Anxiety Stress Scale and the Critical Care Family Need Inventory were used to evaluate the primary outcomes on stress and anxiety, and satisfaction with family needs. The treatment group reported significantly better improvement in the information satisfaction score compared to the control group (p < 0.05; η2= 0.09). Overall main effects were observed on the stress (p < 0.01; η2= 0.20), anxiety (p < 0.01; η2= 0.18), depression (p < 0.05; η2= 0.13), support satisfaction (p < 0.05; η2= 0.13), and comfort satisfaction (p < 0.05; η2= 0.11) scores. The experience of this study suggest that MFCs are in great need of additional support like B-CBE to manage their stress and anxiety. Given the brevity of B-CBE, it is practical for critical care nurses to deliver and MFCs to take within the industrious context of an ICU. More studies are needed to investigate these types of brief psychological interventions.
Original languageEnglish
Article number962
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2016


  • Anxiety
  • Cognitive-behavioral
  • Critical care
  • Family caregivers
  • Family needs
  • Psycho-education
  • Satisfaction
  • Stress

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis

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