Using a mobile phone application in youth mental health - an evaluation study

Aust Fam Physician. 2012 Sep;41(9):711-4.


Background: This study evaluates a mobile phone self monitoring tool designed to assist paediatricians in assessing and managing youth mental health.

Methods: Patients from an adolescent outpatient clinic monitored mental health symptoms throughout each day for 2-4 weeks. Paediatricians specialising in adolescent health and participants reviewed the collated data displayed online and completed quantitative and qualitative feedback.

Results: Forty-seven adolescents and six paediatricians participated. Completion was high, with 91% of entries completed in the first week. Paediatricians found the program helpful for 92% of the participants and understood 88% of their patients' functioning better. Participants reported the data reflected their actual experiences (88%) and was accurate (85%), helpful (65%) and assisted their paediatrician to understand them better (77%). Qualitative results supported these findings.

Discussion: Self monitoring facilitates communication of mental health issues between these paediatricians and patients and is a promising tool for the assessment and management of mental health problems in young people.

Publication types

  • Evaluation Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Australia
  • Cell Phone*
  • Disease Management
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Medical Informatics Applications*
  • Mental Disorders / diagnosis
  • Mental Disorders / prevention & control
  • Mental Disorders / therapy*
  • Mental Health*
  • Pediatrics / methods*
  • Physician-Patient Relations
  • Qualitative Research
  • Self Care / methods*
  • Young Adult