Whether she is running a physician’s office, a clinic or a hospital, a healthcare administrator is likely working within an environment of patient-centered care. He may find that work after achieving an Executive Master of Health Administration Online is not limited to focusing on just one aspect of patient care. That’s because those in the healthcare field are becoming more and more aware that patient health isn’t just limited to the physical – mental health is also extremely important. In an age of ever-evolving technology, mental healthcare is becoming ever more accessible to patients via mobile apps.
Scientists, medical professionals, and other researchers developed many of the useful apps currently available to patients. Their collective expertise ensures that these apps allow patients to successfully manage their depression, anxiety, and more. Here is a sampling of just a few of these revolutionary applications:
Depression is not only difficult for the person dealing with it, but it is also difficult for friends and family. Approaching an individual who is depressed is not easy, and helping her find what she needs can be a delicate process. The beyondblue app becomes very helpful in this scenario. Intended to help individuals navigate difficult conversations, beyondblue assists in the planning of any kind of interaction with a depressed individual. It offers tips from others who have been through the process with their friends and loved ones, and offers resources and advice for next steps.
The Smiling Mind app is intended to teach adolescents the importance of mindfulness. It shows them how to regulate their breathing through meditation and equips users with the tools they need to maintain mental health. Learning to achieve calm at a young age can help individuals handle difficulties down the road. According to the Mayo Clinic, the benefits of meditation include:
- Growth of self-awareness
- Stress management skill-building
- Ability to focus on the present
- Reduction of negative emotions
Another app intended for adolescents is Code Blue. Unfortunately, both physical bullying and cyber bullying are pervasive in schools across the country, leaving middle school and high school students feeling like they have nowhere to turn. Bullying can easily lead to depression or worsen existing symptoms. This app connects these scared teens to trusted adults like parents, teachers, and even mental health professionals.
Part smartphone app, part website, Lantern is a kind of virtual coach. First, the patient starts with a quiz that assesses changes in his or her mood, levels of anxiety and stress, relationships with others, bodily habits, and sleep patterns. After the quiz, Lantern customizes its coaching program to help the patient change any of the above areas. In addition to the virtual element, professionals are available at any time to help patients meet their goals.
Everyone has stressors in their lives, and no matter how seemingly inconsequential these may be, bottling them up and keeping them inside can become unhealthy. However, sometimes patients feel like they can’t talk to anyone about their problems. The ReachOut WorryTime app is a happy medium. Patients don’t have to keep their thoughts to themselves but they also don’t necessarily have to share them with someone else. The app acts like a to-do list and a worry log – all in one.
These apps offer just a sampling of the ways technology is advancing mental healthcare, an issue of importance to doctors, patients, and health administrators alike. To read more about current concerns for health administrators, visit the University of Southern California online.