JMIR Publications

JMIR Mental Health

Internet interventions, technologies and digital innovations for mental health and behaviour change

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Journal Description

JMIR Mental Health (JMH, ISSN 2368-7959) is a new spin-off journal of JMIR, the leading eHealth journal (Impact Factor 2015: 4.532). 

JMIR Mental Health focusses on digital health and Internet interventions, technologies and electronic innovations (software and hardware) for mental health, addictions, online counselling and behaviour change. This includes formative evaluation and system descriptions, theoretical papers, review papers, viewpoint/vision papers, and rigorous evaluations.

JMIR Mental Health publishes even faster and has a broader scope with including papers which are more technical or more formative/developmental than what would be published in the Journal of Medical Internet Research

JMIR Mental Health features a rapid and thorough peer-review process, professional copyediting, professional production of PDF, XHTML, and XML proofs.

JMIR Mental Health adheres to the same quality standards as JMIR and all articles published here are also cross-listed in the Table of Contents of JMIR, the worlds' leading medical journal in health sciences / health services research and health informatics.

Editorial Board members are currently being recruited, please contact us if you are interested (jmir.editorial.office at gmail.com).

 

Recent Articles:

  • Gamification. Author image of a Web-based gamified health behaviour intervention for public sector staff in wales. Sourced and copyright held by authors.

    Gamification and Adherence to Web-Based Mental Health Interventions: A Systematic Review

    Abstract:

    Background: Adherence to effective Web-based interventions for common mental disorders (CMDs) and well-being remains a critical issue, with clear potential to increase effectiveness. Continued identification and examination of “active” technological components within Web-based interventions has been called for. Gamification is the use of game design elements and features in nongame contexts. Health and lifestyle interventions have implemented a variety of game features in their design in an effort to encourage engagement and increase program adherence. The potential influence of gamification on program adherence has not been examined in the context of Web-based interventions designed to manage CMDs and well-being. Objective: This study seeks to review the literature to examine whether gaming features predict or influence reported rates of program adherence in Web-based interventions designed to manage CMDs and well-being. Methods: A systematic review was conducted of peer-reviewed randomized controlled trials (RCTs) designed to manage CMDs or well-being and incorporated gamification features. Seven electronic databases were searched. Results: A total of 61 RCTs met the inclusion criteria and 47 different intervention programs were identified. The majority were designed to manage depression using cognitive behavioral therapy. Eight of 10 popular gamification features reviewed were in use. The majority of studies utilized only one gamification feature (n=58) with a maximum of three features. The most commonly used feature was story/theme. Levels and game leaders were not used in this context. No studies explicitly examined the role of gamification features on program adherence. Usage data were not commonly reported. Interventions intended to be 10 weeks in duration had higher mean adherence than those intended to be 6 or 8 weeks in duration. Conclusions: Gamification features have been incorporated into the design of interventions designed to treat CMD and well-being. Further research is needed to improve understanding of gamification features on adherence and engagement in order to inform the design of future Web-based health interventions in which adherence to treatment is of concern. Conclusions were limited by varied reporting of adherence and usage data.

  • Image Source: Online Training Computer, copyright LeanForward lf,
https://www.flickr.com/photos/125135071@N06/14380538078,
Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution cc-by 2.0 https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/.

    Effectiveness of Internet-Based Interventions for the Prevention of Mental Disorders: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis

    Abstract:

    Background: Mental disorders are highly prevalent and associated with considerable disease burden and personal and societal costs. However, they can be effectively reduced through prevention measures. The Internet as a medium appears to be an opportunity for scaling up preventive interventions to a population level. Objective: The aim of this study was to systematically summarize the current state of research on Internet-based interventions for the prevention of mental disorders to give a comprehensive overview of this fast-growing field. Methods: A systematic database search was conducted (CENTRAL, Medline, PsycINFO). Studies were selected according to defined eligibility criteria (adult population, Internet-based mental health intervention, including a control group, reporting onset or severity data, randomized controlled trial). Primary outcome was onset of mental disorder. Secondary outcome was symptom severity. Study quality was assessed using the Cochrane Risk of Bias Tool. Meta-analytical pooling of results took place if feasible. Results: After removing duplicates, 1169 studies were screened of which 17 were eligible for inclusion. Most studies examined prevention of eating disorders or depression or anxiety. Two studies on posttraumatic stress disorder and 1 on panic disorder were also included. Overall study quality was moderate. Only 5 studies reported incidence data assessed by means of standardized clinical interviews (eg, SCID). Three of them found significant differences in onset with a number needed to treat of 9.3-41.3. Eleven studies found significant improvements in symptom severity with small-to-medium effect sizes (d=0.11- d=0.76) in favor of the intervention groups. The meta-analysis conducted for depression severity revealed a posttreatment pooled effect size of standardized mean difference (SMD) =−0.35 (95% CI, −0.57 to −0.12) for short-term follow-up, SMD = −0.22 (95% CI, −0.37 to −0.07) for medium-term follow-up, and SMD = −0.14 (95% CI, -0.36 to 0.07) for long-term follow-up in favor of the Internet-based psychological interventions when compared with waitlist or care as usual. Conclusions: Internet-based interventions are a promising approach to prevention of mental disorders, enhancing existing methods. Study results are still limited due to inadequate diagnostic procedures. To be able to appropriately comment on effectiveness, future studies need to report incidence data assessed by means of standardized interviews. Public health policy should promote research to reduce health care costs over the long term, and health care providers should implement existing, demonstrably effective interventions into routine care.

  • Using Internet. CC0 License. Source: https://www.pexels.com/photo/man-using-stylus-pen-for-touching-the-digital-tablet-screen-6335/.

    Internet Mindfulness Meditation Intervention for the General Public: Pilot Randomized Controlled Trial

    Abstract:

    Background: Mindfulness meditation interventions improve a variety of health conditions and quality of life, are inexpensive, easy to implement, have minimal if any side effects, and engage patients to take an active role in their treatment. However, the group format can be an obstacle for many to take structured meditation programs. Internet Mindfulness Meditation Intervention (IMMI) is a program that could make mindfulness meditation accessible to all people who want and need to receive it. However, the feasibility, acceptability, and ability of IMMI to increase meditation practice have yet to be evaluated. Objectives: The primary objectives of this pilot randomized controlled study were to (1) evaluate the feasibility and acceptability of IMMIs in the general population and (2) to evaluate IMMI’s ability to change meditation practice behavior. The secondary objective was to collect preliminary data on health outcomes. Methods: Potential participants were recruited from online and offline sources. In a randomized controlled trial, participants were allocated to IMMI or Access to Guided Meditation arm. IMMI included a 1-hour Web-based training session weekly for 6 weeks along with daily home practice guided meditations between sessions. The Access to Guided Meditation arm included a handout on mindfulness meditation and access to the same guided meditation practices that the IMMI participants received, but not the 1-hour Web-based training sessions. The study activities occurred through the participants’ own computer and Internet connection and with research-assistant telephone and email contact. Feasibility and acceptability were measured with enrollment and completion rates and participant satisfaction. The ability of IMMI to modify behavior and increase meditation practice was measured by objective adherence of daily meditation practice via Web-based forms. Self-report questionnaires of quality of life, self-efficacy, depression symptoms, sleep disturbance, perceived stress, and mindfulness were completed before and after the intervention period via Web-based surveys. Results: We enrolled 44 adults were enrolled and 31 adults completed all study activities. There were no group differences on demographics or important variables at baseline. Participants rated the IMMI arm higher than the Access to Guided Meditation arm on Client Satisfaction Questionnaire. IMMI was able to increase home practice behavior significantly compared to the Access to Guided Meditation arm: days practiced (P=.05), total minutes (P=.01), and average minutes (P=.05). As expected, there were no significant differences on health outcomes. Conclusions: In conclusion, IMMI was found to be feasible and acceptable. The IMMI arm had increased daily meditation practice compared with the Access to Guided Meditation control group. More interaction through staff and/or through built-in email or text reminders may increase daily practice even more. Future studies will examine IMMI’s efficacy at improving health outcomes in the general population and also compare it directly to the well-studied mindfulness-based group interventions to evaluate relative efficacy. Trial Registration: Clinicaltrials.gov NCT02655835; http://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT02655835 (Archived by WebCite at http://www.webcitation/ 6jUDuQsG2)

  • Image Source: Videoconference, copyright Joris Leermakers,
https://www.flickr.com/photos/leermakers/3201717270/,
Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution cc-by 2.0 https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/.

    Home-Based Psychiatric Outpatient Care Through Videoconferencing for Depression: A Randomized Controlled Follow-Up Trial

    Abstract:

    Background: There is a tremendous opportunity for innovative mental health care solutions such as psychiatric care through videoconferencing to increase the number of people who have access to quality care. However, studies are needed to generate empirical evidence on the use of psychiatric outpatient care via videoconferencing, particularly in low- and middle-income countries and clinically unsupervised settings. Objective: The objective of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness and feasibility of home-based treatment for mild depression through psychiatric consultations via videoconferencing. Methods: A randomized controlled trial with a 6- and 12-month follow-up including adults with mild depression treated in an ambulatory setting was conducted. In total, 107 participants were randomly allocated to the videoconferencing intervention group (n=53) or the face-to-face group (F2F; n=54). The groups did not differ with respect to demographic characteristics at baseline. The F2F group completed monthly follow-up consultations in person. The videoconferencing group received monthly follow-up consultations with a psychiatrist through videoconferencing at home. At baseline and after 6 and 12 months, in-person assessments were conducted with all participants. Clinical outcomes (severity of depression, mental health status, medication course, and relapses), satisfaction with treatment, therapeutic relationship, treatment adherence (appointment compliance and dropouts), and medication adherence were assessed. Results: The severity of depression decreased significantly over the 12-month follow-up in both the groups. There was a significant difference between groups regarding treatment outcomes throughout the follow-up period, with better results in the videoconferencing group. There were 4 relapses in the F2F group and only 1 in the videoconferencing group. No significant differences between groups regarding mental health status, satisfaction with treatment, therapeutic relationship, treatment adherence, or medication compliance were found. However, after 6 months, the rate of dropouts was significantly higher in the F2F group (18.5% vs 5.7% in the videoconferencing group, P<.05). Conclusions: Psychiatric treatment through videoconferencing in clinically unsupervised settings can be considered feasible and as effective as standard care (in-person treatment) for depressed outpatients with respect to clinical outcomes, patient satisfaction, therapeutic relationship, treatment adherence, and medication compliance. These results indicate the potential of telepsychiatry to extend access to psychiatric care to remote and underserved populations. Clinical Trial: Clinicaltrials.gov NCT01901315; https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT01901315 (Archived by WebCite at http://www.webcitation.org/6jBTrIVwg)

  • Webconferencing with patient. Image sourced and copyright held by authors Minnie Rai et al.

    Barriers to Office-Based Mental Health Care and Interest in E-Communication With Providers: A Survey Study

    Abstract:

    Background: With rising availability and use of Internet and mobile technology in society, the demand and need for its integration into health care is growing. Despite great potential within mental health care and growing uptake, there is still little evidence to guide how these tools should be integrated into traditional care, and for whom. Objective: To examine factors that might inform how e-communication should be implemented in our local outpatient mental health program, including barriers to traditional office-based care, patient preferences, and patient concerns. Methods: We conducted a survey in the waiting room of our outpatient mental health program located in an urban, academic ambulatory hospital. The survey assessed (1) age, mobile phone ownership, and general e-communication usage, (2) barriers to attending office-based appointments, (3) preferences for, and interest in, e-communication for mental health care, and (4) concerns about e-communication use for mental health care. We analyzed the data descriptively and examined associations between the presence of barriers, identifying as a social media user, and interest level in e-communication. Results: Respondents (N=68) were predominantly in the age range of 25-54 years. The rate of mobile phone ownership was 91% (62/68), and 59% (40/68) of respondents identified as social media users. There was very low existing use of e-communication between providers and patients, with high levels of interest endorsed by survey respondents. Respondents expressed an interest in using e-communication with their provider to share updates and get feedback, coordinate care, and get general information. In regression analysis, both a barrier to care and identifying as a social media user were significantly associated with e-communication interest (P=.03 and P=.003, respectively). E-communication interest was highest among people who both had a barrier to office-based care and were a social media user. Despite high interest, there were also many concerns including privacy and loss of in-person contact. Conclusions: A high burden of barriers to attending office-based care paired with a high interest in e-communication supports the integration of e-communication within our outpatient services. There may be early adopters to target: those with identified barriers to office-based care and who are active on social media. There is also a need for caution and preservation of existing services for those who choose not to, or cannot, access e-services.

  • Image Source: Smartphone girl, copyright Insights Unspoken,
http://tinyurl.com/jlho6n5,
Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution cc-by 2.0 https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/.

    mHealth for Schizophrenia: Patient Engagement With a Mobile Phone Intervention Following Hospital Discharge

    Abstract:

    Background: mHealth interventions that use mobile phones as instruments for illness management are gaining popularity. Research examining mobile phone‒based mHealth programs for people with psychosis has shown that these approaches are feasible, acceptable, and clinically promising. However, most mHealth initiatives involving people with schizophrenia have spanned periods ranging from a few days to several weeks and have typically involved participants who were clinically stable. Objective: Our aim was to evaluate the viability of extended mHealth interventions for people with schizophrenia-spectrum disorders following hospital discharge. Specifically, we set out to examine the following: (1) Can individuals be engaged with a mobile phone intervention program during this high-risk period?, (2) Are age, gender, racial background, or hospitalization history associated with their engagement or persistence in using a mobile phone intervention over time?, and (3) Does engagement differ by characteristics of the mHealth intervention itself (ie, pre-programmed vs on-demand functions)? Methods: We examined mHealth intervention use and demographic and clinical predictors of engagement in 342 individuals with schizophrenia-spectrum disorders who were given the FOCUS mobile phone intervention as part of a technology-assisted relapse prevention program during the 6-month high-risk period following hospitalization. Results: On average, participants engaged with FOCUS for 82% of the weeks they had the mobile phone. People who used FOCUS more often continued using it over longer periods: 44% used the intervention over 5-6 months, on average 4.3 days a week. Gender, race, age, and number of past psychiatric hospitalizations were associated with engagement. Females used FOCUS on average 0.4 more days a week than males. White participants engaged on average 0.7 days more a week than African-Americans and responded to prompts on 0.7 days more a week than Hispanic participants. Younger participants (age 18-29) had 0.4 fewer days of on-demand use a week than individuals who were 30-45 years old and 0.5 fewer days a week than older participants (age 46-60). Participants with fewer past hospitalizations (1-6) engaged on average 0.2 more days a week than those with seven or more. mHealth program functions were associated with engagement. Participants responded to prompts more often than they self-initiated on-demand tools, but both FOCUS functions were used regularly. Both types of intervention use declined over time (on-demand use had a steeper decline). Although mHealth use declined, the majority of individuals used both on-demand and system-prompted functions regularly throughout their participation. Therefore, neither function is extraneous. Conclusions: The findings demonstrated that individuals with schizophrenia-spectrum disorders can actively engage with a clinically supported mobile phone intervention for up to 6 months following hospital discharge. mHealth may be useful in reaching a clinical population that is typically difficult to engage during high-risk periods.

  • Image Source: 459, copyright John Loo,
https://www.flickr.com/photos/johnloo/8357285440/, Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution cc-by 2.0 https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/.

    Feasibility and Outcomes of an Internet-Based Mindfulness Training Program: A Pilot Randomized Controlled Trial

    Abstract:

    Background: Interventions based on meditation and mindfulness techniques have been shown to reduce stress and increase psychological well-being in a wide variety of populations. Self-administrated Internet-based mindfulness training programs have the potential to be a convenient, cost-effective, easily disseminated, and accessible alternative to group-based programs. Objective: This randomized controlled pilot trial with 90 university students in Stockholm, Sweden, explored the feasibility, usability, acceptability, and outcomes of an 8-week Internet-based mindfulness training program. Methods: Participants were randomly assigned to either an intervention (n=46) or an active control condition (n=44). Intervention participants were invited to an Internet-based 8-week mindfulness program, and control participants were invited to an Internet-based 4-week expressive writing program. The programs were automated apart from weekly reminders via email. Main outcomes in pre- and postassessments were psychological well-being and depression symptoms. To assess the participant’s experiences, those completing the full programs were asked to fill out an assessment questionnaire and 8 of the participants were interviewed using a semistructured interview guide. Descriptive and inferential statistics, as well as content analysis, were performed. Results: In the mindfulness program, 28 out of 46 students (60%) completed the first week and 18 out of 46 (39%) completed the full program. In the expressive writing program, 35 out of 44 students (80%) completed the first week and 31 out of 44 (70%) completed the full program. There was no statistically significantly stronger intervention effect for the mindfulness intervention compared to the active control intervention. Those completing the mindfulness group reported high satisfaction with the program. Most of those interviewed were satisfied with the layout and technique and with the support provided by the study coordinators. More frequent contact with study coordinators was suggested as a way to improve program adherence and completion. Most participants considered the program to be meaningful and helpful but also challenging. The flexibility in performing the exercises at a suitable time and place was appreciated. A major difficulty was, however, finding enough time to practice. Conclusions: The program was usable, acceptable, and showed potential for increasing psychological well-being for those completing it. However, additional modification of the program might be needed to increase retention and compliance. ClinicalTrial: ClinicalTrials.gov NCT02062762; https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT0206276 (Archived by WebCite at http://www.webcitation.org/6j9I5SGJ4)

  • mHealth on screen. Image created and copyright owned by Authors Sebastian Hökby et al.

    Are Mental Health Effects of Internet Use Attributable to the Web-Based Content or Perceived Consequences of Usage? A Longitudinal Study of European Adolescents

    Abstract:

    Background: Adolescents and young adults are among the most frequent Internet users, and accumulating evidence suggests that their Internet behaviors might affect their mental health. Internet use may impact mental health because certain Web-based content could be distressing. It is also possible that excessive use, regardless of content, produces negative consequences, such as neglect of protective offline activities. Objective: The objective of this study was to assess how mental health is associated with (1) the time spent on the Internet, (2) the time spent on different Web-based activities (social media use, gaming, gambling, pornography use, school work, newsreading, and targeted information searches), and (3) the perceived consequences of engaging in those activities. Methods: A random sample of 2286 adolescents was recruited from state schools in Estonia, Hungary, Italy, Lithuania, Spain, Sweden, and the United Kingdom. Questionnaire data comprising Internet behaviors and mental health variables were collected and analyzed cross-sectionally and were followed up after 4 months. Results: Cross-sectionally, both the time spent on the Internet and the relative time spent on various activities predicted mental health (P<.001), explaining 1.4% and 2.8% variance, respectively. However, the consequences of engaging in those activities were more important predictors, explaining 11.1% variance. Only Web-based gaming, gambling, and targeted searches had mental health effects that were not fully accounted for by perceived consequences. The longitudinal analyses showed that sleep loss due to Internet use (ß=.12, 95% CI=0.05-0.19, P=.001) and withdrawal (negative mood) when Internet could not be accessed (ß=.09, 95% CI=0.03-0.16, P<.01) were the only consequences that had a direct effect on mental health in the long term. Perceived positive consequences of Internet use did not seem to be associated with mental health at all. Conclusions: The magnitude of Internet use is negatively associated with mental health in general, but specific Web-based activities differ in how consistently, how much, and in what direction they affect mental health. Consequences of Internet use (especially sleep loss and withdrawal when Internet cannot be accessed) seem to predict mental health outcomes to a greater extent than the specific activities themselves. Interventions aimed at reducing the negative mental health effects of Internet use could target its negative consequences instead of the Internet use itself. Trial Registration: International Standard Randomized Controlled Trial Number (ISRCTN): 65120704; http://www.isrctn.com/ISRCTN65120704?q=&filters=recruitmentCountry:Lithuania&sort=&offset= 5&totalResults=32&page=1&pageSize=10&searchType=basic-search (Archived by WebCite at http://www.webcitation/abcdefg)

  • Source: https://www.pexels.com/photo/apple-desk-office-technology-1185; CC0 Public domain, modified by authors.

    Achieving Consensus for the Design and Delivery of an Online Intervention to Support Midwives in Work-Related Psychological Distress: Results From a Delphi...

    Abstract:

    Background: Some midwives are known to experience both professional and organizational sources of psychological distress, which can manifest as a result of the emotionally demanding midwifery work, and the traumatic work environments they endure. An online intervention may be one option midwives may engage with in pursuit of effective support. However, the priorities for the development of an online intervention to effectively support midwives in work-related psychological distress have yet to be explored. Objective: The aim of this study was to explore priorities in the development of an online intervention to support midwives in work-related psychological distress. Methods: A two-round online Delphi study was conducted. This study invited both qualitative and quantitative data from experts recruited via a scoping literature search and social media channels. Results: In total, 185 experts were invited to participate in this Delphi study. Of all participants invited to contribute, 35.7% (66/185) completed Round 1 and of those who participated in this first round, 67% (44/66) continued to complete Round 2. Out of 39 questions posed over two rounds, 18 statements (46%) achieved consensus, 21 (54%) did not. Participants were given the opportunity to write any additional comments as free text. In total, 1604 free text responses were collected and categorized into 2446 separate statements of opinion, creating a total of 442 themes. Overall, participants agreed that in order to effectively support midwives in work-related psychological distress, online interventions should make confidentiality and anonymity a high priority, along with 24-hour mobile access, effective moderation, an online discussion forum, and additional legal, educational, and therapeutic components. It was also agreed that midwives should be offered a simple user assessment to identify those people deemed to be at risk of either causing harm to others or experiencing harm themselves, and direct them to appropriate support. Conclusions: This study has identified priorities for the development of online interventions to effectively support midwives in work-related psychological distress. The impact of any future intervention of this type will be optimized by utilizing these findings in the development process.

  • Image Source: stress, copyright trizoultro,
http://tinyurl.com/jdy5eo7, Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution cc-by 2.0 https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/.

    Predicting Risk of Suicide Attempt Using History of Physical Illnesses From Electronic Medical Records

    Abstract:

    Background: Although physical illnesses, routinely documented in electronic medical records (EMR), have been found to be a contributing factor to suicides, no automated systems use this information to predict suicide risk. Objective: The aim of this study is to quantify the impact of physical illnesses on suicide risk, and develop a predictive model that captures this relationship using EMR data. Methods: We used history of physical illnesses (except chapter V: Mental and behavioral disorders) from EMR data over different time-periods to build a lookup table that contains the probability of suicide risk for each chapter of the International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems, 10th Revision (ICD-10) codes. The lookup table was then used to predict the probability of suicide risk for any new assessment. Based on the different lengths of history of physical illnesses, we developed six different models to predict suicide risk. We tested the performance of developed models to predict 90-day risk using historical data over differing time-periods ranging from 3 to 48 months. A total of 16,858 assessments from 7399 mental health patients with at least one risk assessment was used for the validation of the developed model. The performance was measured using area under the receiver operating characteristic curve (AUC). Results: The best predictive results were derived (AUC=0.71) using combined data across all time-periods, which significantly outperformed the clinical baseline derived from routine risk assessment (AUC=0.56). The proposed approach thus shows potential to be incorporated in the broader risk assessment processes used by clinicians. Conclusions: This study provides a novel approach to exploit the history of physical illnesses extracted from EMR (ICD-10 codes without chapter V-mental and behavioral disorders) to predict suicide risk, and this model outperforms existing clinical assessments of suicide risk.

  • OCD? Not Me! Logo. Copyright © 2013 - 2016 Curtin University; https://www.ocdnotme.com.au. Women with a sign. CC0 License. Image retrieved from https://www.pexels.com/photo/woman-girl-model-business-34543/.

    Online Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder Treatment: Preliminary Results of the “OCD? Not Me!” Self-Guided Internet-Based Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Program...

    Abstract:

    Background: The development and evaluation of Internet-delivered cognitive behavioral therapy (iCBT) interventions provides a potential solution for current limitations in the acceptability, availability, and accessibility of mental health care for young people with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). Preliminary results support the effectiveness of therapist-assisted iCBT for young people with OCD; however, no previous studies have examined the effectiveness of completely self-guided iCBT for OCD in young people. Objective: We aimed to conduct a preliminary evaluation of the effectiveness of the OCD? Not Me! program for reducing OCD-related psychopathology in young people (12-18 years). This program is an eight-stage, completely self-guided iCBT treatment for OCD, which is based on exposure and response prevention. Methods: These data were early and preliminary results of a longer study in which an open trial design is being used to evaluate the effectiveness of the OCD? Not Me! program. Participants were required to have at least subclinical levels of OCD to be offered the online program. Participants with moderate-high suicide/self-harm risk or symptoms of eating disorder or psychosis were not offered the program. OCD symptoms and severity were measured at pre- and posttest, and at the beginning of each stage of the program. Data was analyzed using generalized linear mixed models. Results: A total of 334 people were screened for inclusion in the study, with 132 participants aged 12 to 18 years providing data for the final analysis. Participants showed significant reductions in OCD symptoms (P<.001) and severity (P<.001) between pre- and posttest. Conclusions: These preliminary results suggest that fully automated iCBT holds promise as a way of increasing access to treatment for young people with OCD; however, further research needs to be conducted to replicate the results and to determine the feasibility of the program. Trial Registration: Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry (ANZCTR): ACTRN12613000152729; https://www.anzctr.org.au/Trial/Registration/TrialReview.aspx?id=363654 (Archived by WebCite at http://www.webcitation.org/ 6iD7EDFqH)

  • Innovation-Image created and copyright owned by authors Hamish Fulford.

    Exploring the Use of Information and Communication Technology by People With Mood Disorder: A Systematic Review and Metasynthesis

    Abstract:

    Background: There is a growing body of evidence relating to how information and communication technology (ICT) can be used to support people with physical health conditions. Less is known regarding mental health, and in particular, mood disorder. Objective: To conduct a metasynthesis of all qualitative studies exploring the use of ICTs by people with mood disorder. Methods: Searches were run in eight electronic databases using a systematic search strategy. Qualitative and mixed-method studies published in English between 2007 and 2014 were included. Thematic synthesis was used to interpret and synthesis the results of the included studies. Results: Thirty-four studies were included in the synthesis. The methodological design of the studies was qualitative or mixed-methods. A global assessment of study quality identified 22 studies as strong and 12 weak with most having a typology of findings either at topical or thematic survey levels of data transformation. A typology of ICT use by people with mood disorder was created as a result of synthesis. Conclusions: The systematic review and metasynthesis clearly identified a gap in the research literature as no studies were identified, which specifically researched how people with mood disorder use mobile ICT. Further qualitative research is recommended to understand the meaning this type of technology holds for people. Such research might provide valuable information on how people use mobile technology in their lives in general and also, more specifically, how they are being used to help with their mood disorders.

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