Integrating mental wellness and brain wellness assessment/advice on SiSU stations
Flagship Program: Changing Health Trajectories in Chronic Disease
In Australia, problems with mental health are estimated to cost some $60 billion per annum and impact thousands of lives.
Best-practice digital assessment technologies have the potential to empower people to self-manage their mental health and wellness via timely assessment, early intervention and linked digital behaviour change tools.
Importantly, they can also provide a valuable source of epidemiological data for governments and their health services, collected across a wide range of population cohorts and areas.
The SiSU Health Station is an ISO 13485 Class IIa medically-certified health and wellbeing self-assessment device. To date, more than 2.5 million Health Checks have been undertaken on the Health Stations in Australia, across almost 300 pharmacies and other publicly accessible locations.
They enable the public to complete a full (and free) Health Check in just 4 minutes, covering:
- blood pressure
- heart rate
- heart age
- body composition
- diabetes risk (Australian Type 2 Diabetes Risk Assessment Tool – AUSDRISK – Australia only)
Additional testing is also available to cover a Stress Score.
SiSU Health Stations offer an unparalleled opportunity to reach a wide range of the population, particularly those who do not utilise face-to-face primary care services.
This project aims to develop and embed into existing SiSU Health Stations a new platform to support mental health and wellness assessment, and so encourage empowered self-management of mental health concerns (including recommending, where appropriate, that the user seeks additional assistance from a mental health professional).
In addition to being of great health benefit to the public, the project also has the potential to deliver the following scientific outcomes:
- improved cross-sectional understanding of mental and brain wellness in Australia
- improved understanding of the dynamics of assessment and behaviour change across time
- improved understanding of human-computer interfaces in the assessment of mental and brain wellness
- a low-cost solution for capturing mental and brain health data from large populations (including rural populations)
- new understandings of the relationship between physical and mental health, due to the large naturalistic sample
Currently, there is no large-scale longitudinal assessment of mental health and wellness in Australia, and any assessments are limited to snapshots from the Federal Government.
By embedding these assessments into the publicly accessible SiSU Health Station network, this project has the potential to provide a quantum advance in our understanding of:
- the distribution and pattern across time of mental health and wellness in a large sample of the Australian population
- the relationship between mental and physical health, and optimal assessment and monitoring of this relationship within people across time
- how to optimally triage and motivate Australians to improve their mental health on the basis of a free self-assessment
There is great excitement worldwide about the potential of digital assessment and monitoring to transform management of mental health and wellness. This project is unique in bringing together industry and academic/clinical expertise and resources to make this a reality.
To develop and embed into existing SiSU Health Stations a new platform to support mental health and wellness assessment and encourage empowered self-management. From a basic science perspective, the project will make a contribution to the description and assessment of mental health and wellbeing in a digital, population health framework.