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Acceptability, Usability and Functionality of Digital Health Interventions in Mental Health

Acceptability, usability and functionality of digital health interventions for adults with mental health problems: a qualitative systematic review

What we are doing:

Digital health interventions refer to healthcare delivered via a technological or digital platform. For example, websites, computers, mobile phone applications (apps), video conferencing and email.  

The aim of this review will be to explore the experiences of service users with regards to digital mental health interventions. What aspects of digital health interventions are valued and what aspects could be improved or altered? The review will aim to inform future research and provide guidance for policy makers and commissioners regarding the use of digital technology for depression and anxiety and how they might be improved to provide patient benefit.    

Why we are doing it:

Despite the high prevalence of depression and anxiety in the UK, few people who need treatment receive or access treatment for their condition. Only 25% receive adequate treatment and this can be because of aspects such as stigma, fear or previous negative experiences of mental health services. In the last ten years digital health as a means of accessing information about health and illness has risen rapidly. Digital health interventions have the potential to improve accessibility, reduce stigma and meet the demands placed on mental health services. 

There is limited evidence with regards to what makes digital interventions work in adults with conditions such as depression or anxiety, this review will address this.

What the benefits will be:

The review will aim to inform future research and provide guidance for policy makers and commissioners regarding the use of digital technology for depression, anxiety and somatoform disorders and how they might be improved. It will provide patient benefit because it will enable the development of digital health interventions to be more tailored towards individual needs.The key findings of the review will have implications for the design of digital health interventions and thus improve reach, uptake, adherence and experience of digital mental health interventions which will have a positive impact on service users, service providers and commissioners.

Who we are working with:

  • Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust
  • Nottingham City CCG
  • Nene CCG
  • NIHR MindTech Healthcare Technology Co-operative (HTC)
  • Birmingham City University 
  • Public Involvement representatives 

Study lead:

Name: Shireen Patel

Role: Lead Researcher 

Organisation: NIHR CLAHRC East Midlands 

Contact:

Shireen Patel, Shireen.patel@nottingham.ac.uk