Australian Health & Human Capital Economics Seminar | The Long-Run Effects of Psychotherapy on Depression, Beliefs, and Economic Outcomes by Gautam Rao
Welcome back to the Virtual Australian Health & Human Capital Economics Seminar Series, which goes into its second year. This event is organised by A/Professor Victoria Baranov (UMelb), Dr Sarah Walker (UNSW), Professor Stefanie Schurer (USyd), Dr Rebecca McKibbin (USyd), Professor Adeline Delavande (UTS), and Professor Brenda Gannon (UQ).
The seminar series is open to the public. Sign up HERE for mailing list.
The Long-Run Effects of Psychotherapy on Depression, Beliefs, and Economic Outcomes
Associate Professor Gautam Rao
Wednesday 12 October
9.00am – 10.00am
Abstract: We revisit two clinical trials that randomized depressed adults in India (n=775) to a brief course of psychotherapy or a control condition. Four to five years later, the treatment group had 11 percentage points less depression than the control group. The more effective intervention averted 9 months of depression on average over five years and cost only $66. Therapy changed people’s beliefs about themselves in three ways. First, it reduced their likelihood of seeing themselves as a failure or feeling bad about themselves. Second, when faced with a novel work opportunity, therapy reduced over-optimistic belief updating and thus reduced overconfidence. Third, it increased self-assessed levels of patience and altruism. Therapy did not increase levels of employment or consumption, possibly because of other constraints on employment in the largely female study sample