Turning to digital technology to improve access to mental health care

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All around, one in two people is evaluated to encounter a mental health issue in their lifetime, as indicated by the OECD, which can affect their overall health and relationships.

In any case, with healthcare systems around the globe thinking about difficulties including an expanding burden of chronic disease and maturing populaces, endeavors to improve access to services right now once in a while left on the backburner.

Also, the most recent Health at a Glance report demonstrates that numerous nations in the OECD believe that their mental health care is “inadequate”.

As the digital health industry grows, a rising number of innovators are venturing into the mental health space, vowing to offer patients more choice, greater flexibility, and, most importantly, faster access to high-quality care.

Sweden’s KRY, known as LIVI outside the Nordics, is one of the organizations attempting to do precisely that. It propelled its digital psychology service in March 2018, a little over six months after hiring now chief psychologist Jesper Enander.

Gotten to build up the digital mental health offering, before KRY, Enander worked in the public healthcare system in Sweden and completed research on the digitization of psychology at the world-renowned Karolinska Institute.

“The main reason for me joining is because there is really poor access or was poor access to health services in Sweden, and in other countries as well, for mental health.

“It can be really hard for a patient to get access to a psychologist or mainstream treatments, and this is something that must change, so what we did was a digital psychology service, so you have video calls with psychologists, and it’s easier for patients to seek care,” he tells MobiHealthNews.

“It works just like conventional health care, but with the difference that the patient doesn’t have to travel to a clinic to see a psychologist, but rather can do it at home, or in an environment of their choosing.”

Since 2018, KRY analysts have done more than 50,000 consultations. The service, which is broadly accessible, has demonstrated to be generally well known with youngsters, particularly ladies matured 20 to 35.

Enabling patients to get to a specialist that day instead of holding up a long time on end or “getting stuck” someplace in the system has been indispensable to the organization’s prosperity, Enander says.

In any case, the stigma around mental health is still there. “I think one of the reasons that you have the stigma is because it’s been hard to access treatment or treat your problems,” Enander explains. “We need to talk about these issues.”

Recently, KRY declared that it secured €140 million in Series C funding to quicken its push into new markets. The organization is already operating in five nations, Sweden, Norway, Germany, France and the UK.

Its digital psychology service, notwithstanding, is just accessible in Sweden right now, and Enander would not affirm whether plans for additional development were in progress.

“I would love to see it in other markets as well,” he says. “The more digitally-empowered the patient is, the more that they are in control of their own health and care.”

Disclaimer: The views, suggestions, and opinions expressed here are the sole responsibility of the experts. No Stats Observer journalist was involved in the writing and production of this article.

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