Core question

How can we increase access to psychological treatments for mental disorders while at the same time maintaining quality and efficacy?


App-based treatments


  • Can collect other types of data
    • Monitoring mood more closely
    • Location (timely reminders when you get home or get to work)
    • Activity (e.g., sleep schedule and lack of physical activity)
  • Easy access throughout the day, no need to log onto a website

Current issues

Lower demand for psychological treatments, due to non-medical interpretations of symptoms and structural issues in underserved areas, should not be ignored - [@roberts2022]

Despite often claiming to be evidence-based, few apps designed to treat common mental disorders have direct evidence to support their efficacy - [@larsen2019]

The effect sizes associated with app-based treatments are generally smaller than face-to-face or ICBT - [@linardon2019]

Mental health apps often share data with third parties without properly disclosing it - [@huckvale2019]

Stratified care

The argument here is that we have (semi)automated treatment selection so that patients go into therapy quicker. For example selecting between low- and high-intensity treatments rather than putting everyone through stepped care

Delgadillo2022 - Stratified Care vs Stepped Care for Depression, A Cluster Randomized Clinical Trial