Interactive Voice Response—An Innovative Approach to Post-Stroke Depression Self-Management Support

Lesli E. Skolarus, John D. Piette, Paul N. Pfeiffer, Linda S. Williams, Jason Mackey, Rebecca Hughes, Lewis B. Morgenstern

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

9 Scopus citations


Automated interactive voice response (IVR) call systems can provide systematic monitoring and self-management support to depressed patients, but it is unknown if stroke patients are able and willing to engage in IVR interactions. We sought to assess the feasibility and acceptability of IVR as an adjunct to post-stroke depression follow-up care. The CarePartner program is a mobile health program designed to optimize depression self-management, facilitate social support from a caregiver, and strengthen connections between stroke survivors and primary care providers (PCPs). Ischemic stroke patients and an informal caregiver, if available, were recruited during the patient’s acute stroke hospitalization or follow-up appointment. The CarePartner program was activated in patients with depressive symptoms during their stroke hospitalization or follow-up. The 3-month intervention consisted of weekly IVR calls monitoring both depressive symptoms and medication adherence along with tailored suggestions for depressive symptom self-management. After each completed IVR call, informal caregivers were automatically updated, and, if needed, the subject’s PCP was notified. Of the 56 stroke patients who enrolled, depressive symptoms were identified in 13 (23 %) subjects. Subjects completed 74 % of the weekly IVR assessments. A total of six subjects did not complete the outcome assessment, including two non-study-related deaths. PCPs were notified five times, including two times for suicidal ideation and three times for medication non-adherence. Stroke patients with depressive symptoms were able to engage in an IVR call system. Future studies are needed to explore the efficacy of an IVR approach for post-stroke self-management and monitoring of stroke-related outcomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)77-82
Number of pages6
JournalTranslational Stroke Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 1 2017


  • Mobile technology
  • Post-stroke depression
  • Self-management

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine

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