Mental health service preferences of patients and providers: a scoping review of conjoint analysis and discrete choice experiments from global public health literature over the last 20 years (1999–2019)

Anna Larsen, Albert Tele, Manasi Kumar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Background: In designing, adapting, and integrating mental health interventions, it is pertinent to understand patients’ needs and their own perceptions and values in receiving care. Conjoint analysis (CA) and discrete choice experiments (DCEs) are survey-based preference-elicitation approaches that, when applied to healthcare settings, offer opportunities to quantify and rank the healthcare-related choices of patients, providers, and other stakeholders. However, a knowledge gap exists in characterizing the extent to which DCEs/CA have been used in designing mental health services for patients and providers. Methods: We performed a scoping review from the past 20 years (2009–2019) to identify and describe applications of conjoint analysis and discrete choice experiments. We searched the following electronic databases: Pubmed, CINAHL, PsychInfo, Embase, Cochrane, and Web of Science to identify stakehold,er preferences for mental health services using Mesh terms. Studies were categorized according to pertaining to patients, providers and parents or caregivers. Results: Among the 30 studies we reviewed, most were published after 2010 (24/30, 80%), the majority were conducted in the United States (11/30, 37%) or Canada (10/30, 33%), and all were conducted in high-income settings. Studies more frequently elicited preferences from patients or potential patients (21/30, 70%) as opposed to providers. About half of the studies used CA while the others utilized DCEs. Nearly half of the studies sought preferences for mental health services in general (14/30, 47%) while a quarter specifically evaluated preferences for unipolar depression services (8/30, 27%). Most of the studies sought stakeholder preferences for attributes of mental health care and treatment services (17/30, 57%). Conclusions: Overall, preference elicitation approaches have been increasingly applied to mental health services globally in the past 20 years. To date, these methods have been exclusively applied to populations within the field of mental health in high-income countries. Prioritizing patients’ needs and preferences is a vital component of patient-centered care – one of the six domains of health care quality. Identifying patient preferences for mental health services may improve quality of care and, ultimately, increase acceptability and uptake of services among patients. Rigorous preference-elicitation approaches should be considered, especially in settings where mental health resources are scarce, to illuminate resource allocation toward preferred service characteristics especially within low-income settings.

Original languageEnglish
Article number589
JournalBMC Health Services Research
Volume21
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2021
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Conjoint analysis
  • Discrete choice experiments
  • Mental health interventions

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