Long-term effects of filmed social contact or internet-based self-study on mental health-related stigma: a 2-year follow-up of a randomised controlled trial

  • Sosei YamaguchiEmail author
  • Yasutaka Ojio
  • Shuntaro Ando
  • Peter Bernick
  • Kazusa Ohta
  • Kei-ichiro Watanabe
  • Graham Thornicroft
  • Takuma Shiozawa
  • Shinsuke Koike
Original Paper



There is a critical need to clarify the long-term effects of anti-stigma interventions. The study aimed to assess the long-term effects of repeated filmed social contact or internet-based self-study on mental health-related stigma through a randomised controlled trial with 2-year follow-up.


We randomly allocated 259 university or college students to a filmed social contact group, an internet-based self-study group, or a control group. The filmed social contact and internet-based self-study groups each received a 30-min initial intervention followed by emailed interventions every 2 months over a 12-month period. The Japanese version of the Reported and Intended Behaviour Scale (RIBS-J) and the Mental Illness and Disorder Understanding Scale (MIDUS) were used to assess behaviour, behavioural intentions (attitudes), and knowledge regarding mental health.


Of the 259 original participants, 187 completed the 24-month follow-up assessment. Mean scores for the RIBS-J future domain and MIDUS peaked at 1 month after initial intervention. Compared with baseline, at 24-month follow-up, we found a significant difference in RIBS-J future domain scores between the filmed social contact and control groups at 24-month follow-up (B = 0.95, 95% CI = 0.01,1.90, p = 0.049), while MIDUS scores in the filmed social contact group (B = − 4.59, 95%CI = − 6.85, − 2.33, p < 0.001) and the internet-based self-study group (B = − 4.51, 95%CI = − 6.86, − 2.15, p < 0.001) significantly decreased compared with the control group.


While outcome scores peaked at 1 month after initial intervention, results suggest that filmed social contact might have a long-term effect on behavioural intentions, and both filmed social contact and internet-based self-study may contribute to improved knowledge of mental health.


Filmed social contact Internet-based self-study Long-term effect Randomised controlled trial Stigma 



This work was supported by grants to SK from the Japan Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT; grant number 17H05921); the Mitsubishi Foundation; and the Pfizer Health Research Foundation. This work was also supported in part by UTokyo Center for Integrative Science of Human Behaviour (CiSHuB) and the International Research Center for Neurointelligence (WPI-IRCN) at The University of Tokyo Institutes for Advanced Study (UTIAS). Some support for this work was also provided to SK by the University of Tokyo Center for Integrative Science of Human Behaviour (CiSHuB) and the International Research Center for Neurointelligence (WPI-IRCN) at The University of Tokyo Institutes for Advanced Study (UTIAS). GT is supported by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Collaboration for Leadership in Applied Health Research and Care South London at King’s College London NHS Foundation Trust. The views expressed are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of the NHS, the NIHR or the Department of Health. GT acknowledges financial support from the Department of Health via the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Biomedical Research Centre and Dementia Unit awarded to South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust in partnership with King’s College London and King’s College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust. GT is supported by the European Union Seventh Framework Programme (FP7/2007–2013) Emerald project. GT also receives support from the National Institute of Mental Health of the National Institutes of Health under award number R01MH100470 (Cobalt study). GT is also supported by the UK Medical Research Council in relation the Emilia and Indigo Partnership awards.

Compliance with ethical standards

Ethical standards

The authors assert that all procedures contributing to this work comply with the ethical standards of the relevant national and institutional committees on human experimentation and with the Helsinki Declaration of 1975, as revised in 2008.

Conflict of interest

The authors have no conflicts of interest to declare.

Supplementary material

127_2018_1609_MOESM1_ESM.docx (24 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 23 KB)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Community Mental Health and Law, National Institute of Mental HealthNational Center of Neurology and PsychiatryKodairaJapan
  2. 2.Department of PsychiatryThe University of TokyoTokyoJapan
  3. 3.Student Accessibility OfficeNagasaki UniversityNagasakiJapan
  4. 4.Center for Evolutionary Cognitive Sciences, Graduate School of Arts and SciencesThe University of TokyoTokyoJapan
  5. 5.Office for Mental Health Support, Division for Counseling and SupportThe University of TokyoTokyoJapan
  6. 6.Centre for Global Mental Health, Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and NeuroscienceKing’s College LondonLondonUK
  7. 7.Institute for Diversity and Adaptation of Human Mind (UTIDAHM)The University of TokyoTokyoJapan
  8. 8.The International Research Center for Neurointelligence (WPI-IRCN), Institutes for Advanced Study (UTIAS)The University of TokyoTokyoJapan
  9. 9.UTokyo Center for Integrative Science of Human Behavior (CiSHuB)TokyoJapan

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