Leading researchers from The ORIGINS Project have published a paper finding that despite the growing number of studies on mental health digital interventions, few robustly explore engagement, and there is limited evidence of long-term skill use beyond the intervention period.
In their systematic review, published in the Journal of Medical Internet Research, the team aimed to understand the reporting and levels of engagement in studies of digital psychological mental health or well-being interventions offered during the perinatal period.
Lead Author, Jackie Davis, Senior Program Manager of ORIGINS said, “Pregnancy and the postnatal period can be distressing for many women, which can have a negative impact on both Mum and the developing child.”
“Digital tools like mobile apps and web-based programs are cost-effective and easily accessible for many families and can be a positive support for a new mother’s mental health, health, giving them skills to apply in everyday life.”
Ms Davis said she wanted to investigate how the efficacy of existing interventions were being measured and reported for long-term benefit. The paper recommends the adoption of standardised reporting metrics in future mental health digital interventions.
“Many studies fail to report engagement, or long-term usage, of digital mental health programs in a consistent way,” she said.
“Our review provides a guide for reporting so engagement can be compared between studies.”