WHO research indicates that mental health is one of the greatest social and economic challenges of our time, more pronounced now than before the pandemic. According to research from Maynooth University and Trinity College earlier this year, 42% of Irish adults have a mental disorder.
The HSE has now announced a national partnership with digital mental health platform SilverCloud®, that will help address the growing need for access to mental health support in Ireland. Through this partnership, clinicians can refer to SilverCloud’s evidence-based digital CBT (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy) programmes.
A leading digital mental health platform, SilverCloud enables providers, health plans and employers to deliver clinically validated digital health/therapeutic care that improves outcomes and increases access and scale while reducing costs. Developed in Ireland in 2012, the multi-award-winning digital mental health platform is a result of nearly 20 years of clinical research with leading academic institutions.
Active use of the digital platform in Ireland has doubled since the 12-month review of the pilot in April 2022. The service has seen over 10,000 referrals from Ireland based GPs, Primary Care Psychologists, Counselling in Primary Care and Jigsaw as they identify SilverCloud as a potential solution to support their patients.
According to Dr Derek Richards, Chief Science Officer of SilverCloud, Amwell, ‘The SilverCloud digital CBT programmes can be accessed confidentially from one’s own home, therefore, waitlists for appointments and even location in remote areas of the country are no longer impediments.’
A new report published by SilverCloud, reviews the first 18-month application of the service in Ireland. 89 per cent of people provided access to SilverCloud felt that digital CBT would work for them and their needs prior to commencing a programme. The overall satisfaction rate of the programme was 94% post-use.
Patient engagement with the programmes has seen a broad age range between 18-44 years (76%) and a representation across all 26 counties with Dublin, Cork and Galway leading in account volume.