The One-Week Panic Program

What is the The One-Week Panic Program?

This study is being conducted by a team of research at St. Vincent’s Hospital and the University of New South Wales. We are recruiting individuals who experience frequent panic attacks or who avoid situations due to fear of panic, to evaluate the feasibility of providing online cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) in an 'accelerated' or 'intensive' time-frame.

The study uses an adaption of our existing 6-lesson panic program. The new program focuses on the key strategies within the existing program, and is delivered across just one week (7 days).

There is some initial research that suggests CBT for panic disorder can be delivered 'intensively' in one week when provided via face-to-face therapy. There is also good evidence that online CBT is effective in reducing panic symptoms when delivered across an 8-12 week period. We are now testing whether online CBT can improve panic symptoms when delivered in an accelerated time-frame, over one week.

The program will start on a Monday and last for 7 days (until the following Sunday). Participants will need to spend 3-4 hours per day on program related activities during the treatment week. Participants can choose what week is convenient for them to do the program (you may need some time to organize childcare or time off work, etc).

NOTE: we also have a study of the Panic Program delivered over 8-weeks (The 'Panic Uplift Study'). If you prefer an 8-week program, go to: https://virtualclinic.org.au/trials/panic


What does the program involve?
All components are online. The program includes 6 comic-style lessons. A new lesson is released each day, except for Day 6 which is set aside for practicing the skills taught in the program. Each lesson is accompanied by information summaries, extra resources (e.g. FAQs and video demonstrations) and actions plans for you to carry out that day.

Participants will receive support from the Virtual Clinic clinicians (i.e. registered mental health professionals) via phone and email during the treatment week.

You would be required to answer questionnaires related to anxiety during the treatment week, one week after the program ends, and 2 months after the program ends.


Who can apply?
Because this is a research trial, we have strict criteria about who can be included in the study. To participate you need to:
- Live in Australia
- Be over 18 years of age
- Have significant problems with panic and anxiety
- Have regular access to a computer with internet
- Be willing to provide us with your full name, email, phone number and address, so that we can contact you.

We cannot include individuals with a bipolar disorder, psychosis, or schizophrenia, as we do not have evidence that our program benefits these conditions. Additionally, as we must adhere to the strict patient safety regulations required by our Research Ethics Committee, we cannot include individuals who are suicidal.

During the application process we will assess whether you meet the other eligibility criteria for this study.


How do I apply?
You must first read the patient information sheet (think terms and conditions) and then indicate your informed consent to apply for the study and, if eligible, participate in the study. You will then be asked to complete some online screening questionnaires. Depending on your responses, we may then ask you to complete a telephone interview.


Is it free?
Yes. Usually it costs to do our courses, however this research trial is a way that you can get to do the courses for free! You will not be paid for your participation.


What if I can't finish the course?
Participation is voluntary and you can withdraw at any time, but we would we would love for you to stay. We want to learn what contributes to success in people who complete the whole program so that we can develop effective treatments for people like you!


Want to apply?
Feel free to contact us at [email protected] (email is monitored during business hours AEDT) if you would like to speak further with the study team, or if you have any questions or concerns.

If you are interested in participating in our study, please read the Participant Information Sheet and then click "Apply Now" below to register and get started on some questionnaires to work out if this is the right study for you.

Apply Now