What is it about?

Digital Mental Health Interventions (DMHIs) are online therapy programs where people can read or watch content and learn skills to help improve their mental health. Despite being easy and quick to access, many people who are interested in these programs don't use them. We asked some of these people why (205 people did our online questionnaire and we conducted 20 interviews). We found many different reasons why people seek help in the first place, and why they don't engage with DMHIs, e.g., some people were confused about what these programs are and whether they were suitable for them, while others were unsure what it means for them to seek or need help, or were lonely and wanted a human connection.

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Why is it important?

Conducting research with people who don't use or engage with an intervention is inherently difficult, because these people are, by their nature, hard to reach. With this study we gained unique insights from non-engaging clients of a real intervention, across four distinct healthcare ecosystems in the UK and US. We also explored the big picture, root causes of the most pressing issue facing the digital delivery of mental health support - that of low client uptake and engagement.

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Between Rhetoric and Reality: Real-world Barriers to Uptake and Early Engagement in Digital Mental Health Interventions, ACM Transactions on Computer-Human Interaction, December 2023, ACM (Association for Computing Machinery),
DOI: 10.1145/3635472.
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