Campus Location

Dallas Campus (Online)

Date of Award


Document Type




Degree Name

Doctor of Nursing Practice

Committee Chair or Primary Advisor

Dr. Tonya Hartjes

Second Committee Member or Secondary Advisor

Dr. Lynx McClellan

Third Committee Member or Committee Reader

Dr. Tonya Sawyer-McGee



This study’s aim was to evaluate the effectiveness of an existing peer support program as an adjunct treatment for patients with depression. This retrospective evaluation analyzed the total scores of 110 patients with depression on the PHQ-9 questionnaire at the initial assessment (Time 1), at 6-weeks (Time 2), and then at 12-weeks (Time 3). The participants were divided into two groups, those who enrolled in a peer support program (n = 55) and those without peer support (n = 55). PHQ-9 total scores for each time interval were compared for the two groups utilizing independent sample t-tests. At initial assessment (Time 1), both groups reported depressive symptoms in the moderately severe range (15-19), with a mean of 15. The two groups’ total scores did not statistically differ at Time 1 prior to treatment, nor at Time 2. The two groups differed significantly (p < .001) on depressive symptoms at the 12-week follow-up (Time 3), such that outpatients assigned to peer support had lower depressive scores ranging in the moderate range (10-14). The use of a peer support program revealed a statistically significant impact by week 12 in patients with depression. The use of a peer support program may be utilized as adjunctive therapy in the treatment of depression and should be continued for a period of at least 12 weeks.

Keywords: peer, depression, effective, support, recovery, outpatient clinic, treatment

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.



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