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Boosting Healthcare Workers' Mental Health with a Smartphone App

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Clinical trial finds that the Foundation smartphone app can improve mental health in healthcare workers

In our fast-paced world, taking care of one's mental health is just as important as physical well-being. Especially for healthcare workers who tirelessly serve others, finding ways to maintain good mental health is crucial.

A clinical trial has explored how a smartphone app called 'Foundations' could help improve the mental health and well-being of healthcare workers in England. 

Background

Healthcare workers (HCWs) have faced considerable pressures during the COVID-19 pandemic. This includes work-based ones such as the risk of infection, increased workload, exposure to trauma, social challenges of isolation, increased caring demands, and loss of loved ones. While there has been a substantial psychological toll across the entire population, some studies suggest that HCWs have elevated levels of probable common mental disorders, anxiety, depression, and insomnia. Poor mental health status has ramifications for not only HCWs and their families but also HCWs’ ability to support patients. Hence, health systems and organizations have tried to support HCWs through a range of initiatives and measures, however, most of these lack clinical evidence.

Clinical Trial

The researchers were concerned about the mental well-being of healthcare workers and to address this issue, they conducted a clinical trial using a special tool – a smartphone app named 'Foundations'. This app was designed to offer support and strategies to enhance mental health and well-being.

The researchers invited healthcare workers from various places in England to join the clinical trial. These workers were randomly divided into two groups. One group used the 'Foundations' app, while the other group did not. Over a specific period, both groups were evaluated to see if there were any improvements in their mental health and overall well-being.

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Results

The results of the clinical trial were very encouraging. Healthcare workers who used the 'Foundations' app reported feeling better mentally and emotionally. They had a reduction in psychiatric morbidity symptoms, improvement in well-being, and reduction in insomnia. The app seemed to provide them with useful techniques to manage their feelings and cope with the challenges of their job.

The 'Foundations' app was successful in improving mental health and well-being as it provided helpful tips and strategies that were easy to understand and put into practice. It included six focus areas to work on (relaxation, sleep, anxious thoughts, feeling down, self-esteem, stress).

The results of this clinical trial have important implications for the future. It highlights the potential of using smartphone apps as tools to enhance mental health and well-being, especially for those in high-stress professions like healthcare. As technology continues to advance, such apps could become a valuable part of mental health support systems.

Conclusion

In conclusion, the clinical trial revealed the positive impact of the 'Foundations smartphone app on the mental health and well-being of healthcare workers. This user-friendly app provided practical strategies that helped reduce stress, anxiety, and depression while boosting overall well-being. The success of this clinical trial opens doors to explore similar approaches in supporting mental health for other groups of people.
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BJ Psych, Sept-06-22



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This content is for informational and educational purposes only. It is not intended to provide medical advice or to take the place of such advice or treatment from a personal physician. All readers/viewers of this content are advised to consult their doctors or qualified health professionals regarding specific health questions. CenTrial Data Ltd. does not take responsibility for possible health consequences of any person or persons reading or following the information in this educational content. Treatments and clinical trials mentioned may not be appropriate or available for all trial participants. Outcomes from treatments and clinical trials may vary from person to person. Consult with your doctor as to whether a clinical trial is a suitable option for your condition. Assistance from generative AI tools may have been used in writing this article.