A Study of Remote Behavioral Activation to Treat Depression in Older Adult Survivors of Cancer


Full Title

Brief Behavioral Activation for the Treatment of Depression in Older Adult Cancer Survivors


The purpose of this study is to learn if a psychotherapy method called behavioral activation (BA) can be successfully provided by telephone or videoconference (remotely) and can effectively treat depression in older cancer survivors. BA guides people to set goals and engage in enjoyable or rewarding activities as a way of changing behavior and reducing symptoms of depression. It has been shown to be effective for treating depression.

Because older adults often have difficulty with mobility or face other challenges with travel to receive in-person treatment, researchers want to find out if BA can be delivered remotely instead. This study will compare virtual BA with virtual supportive psychotherapy, a standard method used to treat depression in older adult survivors of cancer.

Participants in this study will be randomly assigned to receive ten weekly remote sessions of BA or supportive psychotherapy. They will complete three sets of questionnaires before, during, and after their therapy sessions to assess their quality of life, depression, and anxiety.

Who Can Join

Participants in this study include English-speaking older adults (at least age 65) who are receiving care through Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center’s survivorship clinic and who are experiencing symptoms of depression.


For more information about this study, please contact the office of Dr. Rebecca Saracino at 646-888-0263.





ClinicalTrials.gov ID