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Paving the way for an Effective and Personalized Digital Mental Health Care in 2021
Mental Health
2 Minutes
Two people wear masks happily outside.

To quote one of our team members in appreciation of writing, as one of the oldest and primary ways of communication:

“I remember when my grandfather was out of town on a mission and my grandmother couldn’t wait for those quick weekly calls he made home. Back then, making phone calls between different cities was not as convenient and affordable as today and you were also stressed for time which made the calls very short. After each phone call, my grandmother would complain about how much she missed him and that she never got to tell him about all the little things that she had on her mind… Which is partly why they started writing to each other instead.

The letters were like little miracles, they could spend quality time by telling each other everything they normally didn’t have time to talk about over the phone. Writing was the perfect tool for their communication, they didn’t have to rush over their stories, they could write it over a few days as new experiences arose and it made the conversations more memorable. My grandmother always said: “I truly felt your grandfather’s presence through his letters, which allowed me to endure his absence.”

What 2020 and its pandemic ridden limits showed us was that not only a lack of physical presence was not a hindrance, but in fact it opened up another realm of possibilities in regards to mental health services.

As already discussed in one of our previous posts, the hybrid nature of mental health sessions provides sufficient time for each user to complete the assignments and go through a smart care plan at their own pace. This technique allows them to comprehend the information and prepare their questions for the therapist without having to worry about any time limitations.
On the other hand, there is a significant amount of time saved by the therapist for simply having access to clinically trialed and tested materials and therefore developing a personalized smart care plan for each individual user. This efficiency and time saved, allows for the care provider to take on more patients.

The fact that there are not enough resources in terms of available human professionals to respond to the rising demand for mental health care, is not dismissable. This is exactly where the role of AI becomes highlighted, but not to remove professionals from the equation, rather to help them by the incredible ability to scale mental health care delivery.

In this scenario, users are happy to receive effective and personalized service without being worried about the stigma associated with seeking help for mental health concerns.

The importance of personalized mental health care plan is to prevent extra time and resources spent by patients or their insurance, on ineffective and unnecessary treatments, and to prevent the extra cost associated with it (whether paid by the insurance company or by the patient itself). Imagine a patient who is in urgent need of medication regarding their struggles with depression or anxiety, and spends time on several digital psychotherapy sessions without getting the prescribed medication, this would only lead to time and resources misused by the patients and insurance companies.

Another important benefit of AI integrated care plans which was discussed in detail in a prior article, is the role of language processing in reviewing the assignments and patient concerns sent to the care provider. Through this system, users should not be worried about the length of the text they write to talk about their problems and concerns, as the care providers’ AI will review and classify different parts of the patient’s assignments for elements such as symptom-related sentences, stress-related situations, and events.

Facing a growing demand for mental health support requires a scalable, human supervised, AI enriched platform such as OPTT. In the next post we will talk about how generating monthly progress reports in terms of the retention and engagement of the users can play a beneficial role in mental health care management.

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