Monday, 5 March 2012

Email and Text coming to the rescue for delivering effective care to patients?

When you are tired and depressed and anxious, would seeing a real person in the flesh and talking through the problems be a more obvious choice than using the cold and impersonal electronic communication channels at our finger tips?

Two recent stories have talked about the effective trials of psychological services being delivered via text or email - with amazing results! Radio 4's You and Yours, were discussing the new App called 'Buddy' that texts patients questions relating to their mood and generating a continuous picture of their psychological condition. Listen to the show here, and read more about the app here. The BBC Health website has recently reported on some Dutch research into the effectiveness of email-based psychological therapies in young patients with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. Read the full article here.

Nothing should substitute the face-to-face consolations with healthcare professionals, but these additional communication channels could provide (like the telehealth systems) valuable information that makes the face-to-face consultations more useful. And the results are certainly impressive!

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