Over half a million Canadians live with bipolar disorder (BD), a long-term, serious mental health condition that causes extreme mood swings from depression to mania. With optimal treatment, care, and empowerment, people with BD can flourish, but this requires more than just medication. Mobile phone applications (‘apps’) can deliver knowledge on effective self-management strategies for BD and provide real-time support. Despite high interest in mental health apps, a CREST.BD survey showed that in practice few people with BD are using such tools, and clinicians do not feel well equipped to recommend apps to their patients.
This project will develop a suite of patient and clinician-facing educational resources (e.g. webinars, videos, blog posts) in collaboration with people with lived-experience and clinicians. A co-ordinated social media strategy will be developed to increase awareness of these resources.
Expected outcomes include: patients will better understand the potential benefits and risks of mental health apps; patients will improve their digital health literacy by learning strategies to identify safe and secure mental health apps; clinicians will improve knowledge about app evaluation frameworks and informed decision making.
Team members: Natalie Dee (CREST.BD); Emma Morton (UBC); John Torous (Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Centre); Rosemary Xinhe Hu (CREST.BD); Caden Poh (UBC); Laura Lapadat (UBC); Linda Yang (UBC)