The Digital Mental Health Map: Framing the Space

In any strategy exercise, a map of the territory on which battle is waged, is necessary. The map’s contours reflect the strategist view to start. As the map is shared and discussed with fellow strategists, it becomes more informed and effective in supporting strategic (advantageous) action. This task is what I want to begin to unpack in this post.

Disclaimer here is that as a long-term pharma strategist, I tend to see the world through pharma lens. I welcome the input and education of professionals from other healthcare sectors to aid my blind- and distorted-spots, so critique away!

As I have done ongoing searches of news, literature and analysis, I formed an initial three dimensional (cubular) map of the digital mental health space comprised of: a) players, b) disorders and c) care stages. This map provided a good frame to start with. As my research has deepened, I recognize there are further dimensions beyond this cube, like, geography, core technology, market positioning, user interfaces, funding stages, etc., to understand opportunities for accelerated & responsible scale. Over time, it is my intention to create, analyze and offer insights related to each of these dimensions. This can get long so I will be breaking this explanation over multiple posts and weeks

Within these three dimensions, I focus on the following within each:

1. players: a) consumers/patients/sufferers (c/p/s), b) caregivers, c) licensed health care professionals (inclusive of primary care, psychology, psychiatry, therapists, listeners, etc.), d) payors, e) distributors (pharmacy), f) social welfare system and g) law enforcement,

2. dis-eases: a) depression, b) bipolar, c) ADHD, d) schizophrenia, e) anxiety, f) phobias and g) dementia. I have since begun to add: h) substance abuse, and i) autism. I recognize that, over time, there may be opportunity for adding various neurological disorders also, and

3. care stages: a) prevention, b) diagnosis, c) treatment and d) recovery.

As I have built my digital mental health solutions database over time, this cube had been useful in how I have categorized my findings. In the time since this initial cubular digital mental health map was developed, my research has called up two additional dimensions, those of therapeutic methods deployed through digital tech, and technologies used to deliver any given digital mental health solutions.

The therapeutic methods I see most often are: a) cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), b) mindfulness and c) exposure therapy.

The technologies I see most often used are: a) tele-/video-phony, b) sensors, c) mixed reality (including virtual), d) electronic records, e) mobile/wireless (inclusive of IOT) and f) data algorithms.

In future posts, I will be writing more on these dimensions. With that I will stop for this post. In my next posts, I will continue a discussion regarding these dimensions and insights that have emerged from their analysis.

Thanks for reading, and spreading the word on these posts. Also, please subscribe to receive our postings in your inbox.

By all means, append and challenge my findings and insights as they will only sharpen this curation work.

If you want to read more about the work of The Digital Mental Health Project, please read here: (http://bit.ly/dMHpLinks).

Postscript: The Digital Mental Health Survey
Also, last week, I failed to mention that I have an ongoing Digital Mental Health Awareness & Use Survey to help get a take on how people are aware of and using digital tech for mental health. It only takes about 7 minutes to complete. It can be found here: (http://bit.ly/dMHpLinks). Thanks for participating and spreading the word on it. I will be reporting out on its initial (and ongoing) findings in future posts.

Be well.

@DMentalHProject #mmentalhealth

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *