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Summarizing current news and empirical literature related to digital health technologies
Eye on Innovation

Summarizing current news and empirical literature related to digital health technologies

The field of behavioral health and technology moves at a rapid pace. CTBH follows news and empirical publications and compiles references to and synopses of pieces describing cutting edge applications of technology in behavioral health.
Eye on Innovation

NAB Unveils Youth Mental Health Awareness Campaign

Article Excerpt:On Tuesday, July 23, the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) launched “OK2TALK,” a campaign to increase understanding and awareness about mental health in youth. The Tumblr-based community campaign includes television and radio ads in English and Spanish that feature teens and young adults opening up about their experiences with mental health. These ads aim to prompt conversation and let people know that help is available and effective.

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Source: NIMH


Mobile Pillbox App Promotes Diabetes Medication Adherence: Report

Article Excerpt: The MediSafe Project, a medication adherence cloud-based mobile platform, has recently released a report claiming compliance rates of near 80 percent for patients taking type 2 diabetes medications. This app utilizes a reminder system to alert users when they need to take a medication and also incorporates family, friend and caregiver support by sending an alert if a dose is missed. Through the cloud platform, caregivers are able to track patient adherence instantaneously by way of a HIPAA compliant data monitoring system. According to the World Health Organization, general medication adherence for this population is an average of 50 percent but with this new technology, there are clear improvements in adherence rates.

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Article Source:  eWeek


Mango Health Users Most Adherent on Wednesdays

Article Excerpt: Mango Health, the Rock Health startup, just released aggregated data from its medication adherence app about adherence habits of its user base. Interestingly, its user base is most adherent on Wednesdays while least adherent on the weekends. Although medication adherence is found to be lower for mental health medications, it is clear that the app is helping promote better adherence overall.

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Article Source:  mobihealthnews


Suicidal Teens Turn to Social Media, Not Hotlines & Support Groups

Article Excerpt: Ohio State researchers conducting a survey of young adults found that text messages were the second-most common way (behind talking to a friend or family member) for respondents to seek help when they felt depressed. Contrastingly, use of suicide hotlines or online suicide support groups ranked last, despite being the most prevalent strategy among existing suicide-prevention initiatives. Findings suggest that suicide prevention and intervention efforts geared at teens and young adults should employ social networking and other types of technology.

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Article Source:  Psych Central

A Mobile Phone Application for the Assessment and Management of Youth Mental Health Problems in Primary Care: Health Service Outcomes from a Randomized Controlled Trial of Mobiletype

Reid, S. C., Kauer, S. D., Hearps, S. J. C, et al. (2013). A mobile phone application for the assessment and management of youth mental health problems in primary care: Health service outcomes from a randomized controlled trial of mobiletypeBMC Family Practice, 14, 84.

The mobiletype program is a mobile phone mental health assessment and management application which monitors mood, stress and everyday activities, then transmits this information to general practitioners (GPs) via a secure website in summary format for medical review. The authors conducted a randomized controlled trial in primary care with patients aged 14 to 24 years with mental health concerns.  Participants were randomly assigned to either the intervention group (where mood, stress and daily activities were monitored) or the attention-comparison group (where only daily activities were monitored). Of 114 participants included in analyses, t-tests indicated that the intervention program increased understanding of patient mental health, assisted in decisions about medication/referral and helped in diagnosis when compared to the attention-comparison program.  This study suggests that mobiletype has much to offer GPs in the often difficult and time-consuming task of assessment and management of youth mental health problems in primary care.


Patients Lead The Way As Medicine Grapples With Apps

Article Excerpt: Health apps like MyFitnessPal are turning smartphones and tablets into exercise aids, blood pressure monitors and even devices that transmit an electrocardiogram. But in an environment that Ben Chodor from Happtique refers to as “the Wild West”, the explosion of health apps is way ahead of tests to determine which ones work. Many unresolved questions also still exist around the data collected by medical apps, including whether the information patients collect becomes part of their medical record, how to ensure validity of the data, and what insurance will cover.

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Article Source:  NPR


WellDoc’s BlueStar Secures First Mobile Health Reimbursement

Article Excerpt: WellDoc has launched a new product, BlueStar, which it says is the first mobile health product to secure reimbursement as a diabetes therapy that will be offered as a pharmacy benefit like other prescription products. BlueStar provides real-time motivational, behavioral and educational coaching, as well as testing, health advice, and medication adherence reminders for diabetes management.

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Article Source:  MobiHealthNews


Text Message Smoking Cessation Program Targets Teens

Article Excerpt: The National Cancer Institute is finding success with its smartphone-based smoking cessation program, called SmokefreeTXT.  Targeting teenagers and other under-reached groups, the program assesses the user’s texts and responds with suggestions, encouragement, and advice about how to keep going — focusing on things like managing cravings and controlling moods. Initial results indicate a 12% quit rate at one month and 6% sustained quit rate at 6 months, which is still more than double the typical smoking cessation rate of 2-3% for teenagers.

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Article Source:  Politico


HP Virtual Health Tech Platform Provides Mental Health Services in Rural India

Article Excerpt: Hewlett-Packard (HP) has teamed up with the M.S. Chellamuthu Trust & Research Foundation (MSC Trust) to deliver psychiatric care to remote areas of India. MSC Trust works to provide early detection, treatment and rehabilitation for mental health disorders in Tamil Nadu, a rural area in southern India. HP plans to network small mobile healthcare vans to central hubs so that doctors can deliver consultations in rural areas using voice, SMS and video conferencing technology.

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Article Source:  Health Tech Zone