Research Topic

mHealth: Self-Management and Complementary Psychiatric Treatment

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About this Research Topic

mHealth services and devices, such as online psychoeducation and therapy, mobile applications, virtual reality applications, and videogames, represent an accessible and efficacious means to provide low-cost and easy-access support to individuals struggling with psychological distress and psychiatric symptoms. ...

mHealth services and devices, such as online psychoeducation and therapy, mobile applications, virtual reality applications, and videogames, represent an accessible and efficacious means to provide low-cost and easy-access support to individuals struggling with psychological distress and psychiatric symptoms. mHealth is increasingly used as part of stepped-care approaches for delivering and monitoring mental health treatment. Although many promising technology based treatments exist, only a few have achieved wide spread deployment. Successful integration and implementation of mHealth into existing services and organizations is a critical component of wide spread diffusions and sustainment of innovative treatments. Multiple barriers and challenges exist to implementation that represent key lessons from the field that can help inform important research questions in this area as well as provide a roadmap to those seeking to implement mHealth services and devices into mental health treatment.

This Research Topic aims to explore implementation of mHealth related to mental wellbeing, factors affecting mental wellbeing such as emotion regulation, psychiatric symptoms, and cognition. Our main interest is to identify implementation best practices in order to inform organizational decision making in selecting and implementing proper mHealth tools in order to improve access and efficacy of support and psychiatric care. Special emphasis will be given to work being done to implement these solutions among those populations who otherwise have access barriers to psychiatric services, work comparing traditional treatment to treatment complemented by mHealth tools, comparison of different mHealth tools, user experience, ethical aspects and cost-effectiveness of interventions. We are also interested in solutions that have applicability for COVID-19 response.

• Description of methods and process of participatory development (with stakeholders, patients, family members, industrial partners)
• Validation and evaluation of efficacy and cost of specific interventions
• Tools and methods to measure user experience and integrate that to the process of development
• Comparison of different mHealth tools
• Applications using learning health care solutions models
• Processes of integration of mHealth tools to traditional services
• Cost-effectiveness
• Solutions suitable for areas with slow networks and low technological capacity
• Ethical issues
• Cultural safety, diversity and social factors affecting content of applications and implementation
• Studies comparing implementation models and techniques
• Besides clinical trials, we welcome qualitative work, systematic reviews and evidence-driven expert commentaries that critically assess the present state of research to predict and advise on future directions.


Keywords: mHealth, Digital Health, Wellbeing, Psychoeducation, Mobile applications, Virtual Reality


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