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Recent developments in the use of online resources and mobile technologies to support mental health care.

Turvey CL, Roberts LJ. Recent developments in the use of online resources and mobile technologies to support mental health care. International review of psychiatry (Abingdon, England). 2015 Nov 2; 1-11.

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This review describes recent developments in online and mobile mental health applications, including a discussion of patient portals to support mental health care. These technologies are rapidly evolving, often before there is systematic investigation of their effectiveness. Though there are some reviews of the effectiveness of mental health mobile apps, perhaps the more significant development is innovation in technology evaluation as well as new models of interprofessional collaboration in developing behavioural health technologies. Online mental health programs have a strong evidence base. Their role in population health strategies needs further exploration, including the most effective use of limited clinical staff resources. Patient portals and personal health records serve to enhance mental health treatment also, though concerns specific to mental health must be addressed to support broader adoption of portals. Provider concerns about sharing psychiatric notes with patients hinder support for portals. Health information exchange for mental health information requires thoughtful consent management strategies so mental health patients can benefit. Finally, the broad array of health information technologies may overwhelm patients. User-friendly, well-designed, patient-centred health information technology homes may integrate these functions to promote a holistic approach to care plans and overall wellness. Such technology homes have special security needs and require providers and patients to be well informed about how best to use these technologies to support behavioural health interventions.

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