Referring Adolescent Primary Care Patients to Single-Session Interventions for Anxiety and Depression: Protocol for a Feasibility Study

Mara Eyllon*, Michelle Dalal, Laura Jans, Ian Sotomayor, Gabrielle Peloquin, James Yon, Rochelle Fritz, Jessica Schleider

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Background: Despite the growing prevalence of depression and anxiety among adolescents, fewer than half access appropriate mental health care. Single-session interventions (SSIs) for depression and anxiety offered in primary care are a promising approach to bridging the treatment gap. Objective: We aimed to implement a clinical workflow for primary care and behavioral health providers to refer patients aged 13 to 17 years with mild to moderate depression and anxiety symptoms to Project YES (Youth Empowerment and Support), an open-access SSI platform, in a large group medical practice with an integrated behavioral health department. Methods: Pediatric primary care and integrated behavioral health providers will be educated on the benefits of Project YES for adolescent anxiety and depression and trained in a workflow integrated within the electronic health record system, Epic, to refer patients during well-child visits and pediatric behavioral health visits. Patients with mild to moderate internalizing symptoms based on the 17-item Pediatric Symptom Checklist or youth Pediatric Symptom Checklist will be invited to try an SSI through Project YES. We will examine provider uptake and perceptions of acceptability, feasibility, and appropriateness over time. Results: The rollout will take place between November 2022 and May 2023, when outcomes will be evaluated. Data analysis and manuscript writing are anticipated to be completed during the summer of 2023. Conclusions: SSIs such as those available through Project YES have the potential to provide low-cost, evidence-based mental health treatment to adolescents with mild to moderate depression and anxiety. If deemed feasible and acceptable, providing SSIs in primary care settings could significantly improve access to mental health care without taxing pediatric primary care and behavioral health providers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere45666
JournalJMIR Research Protocols
StatePublished - 2023


  • adolescents
  • behavioral health care
  • mental health
  • primary care
  • single-session interventions

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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