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Leadership & Management

Harnessing the Power of Digital for Better Mental Health

Three months ago, I received a call and my mission, if I chose to accept it, was to bring together thought leaders who are active in the mental health digital and social media arena. It was with total and unashamed glee that I accepted this request to arrange an event to explicitly celebrate the increasing role of technology in mental health care.  

It just so happens that I had been working with some inspirational leaders to drive for the first UK E-Mental Health strategy, so the timing couldn’t have been better.The details were scant enough to allow my creativity to guide how this event would play out.

In my head I had some ideas of the basic necessities to make this event worthwhile:

  1. As a tech event, the format needed to reach a harmonious balance mixing the formal with the informal;
  2. It would have to feature some of the most cutting edge speakers who happily straddle the clinical, managerial and technological arenas;
  3. It would have to attract and be attended by equally forward thinking people who can comfortably debate issues like the drivers for using technology in mental health and some of the barriers to adoption at scale.

So I sat down with my team and explained this opportunity – they equally grinned ear to ear and rubbed their hands together with unabashed excitement at this opportunity to engage with other people who are keen to explore the potential of E-Mental Health. We spent some time calling, e-mailing and meeting with people who I have come to refer to as E-Mental Health pioneers.

You can see the full list of these pioneers on the  E-Mental Health: Harnessing the Power of Digital for Better Mental Health Conference programme. The event took place on 18th March 2013. It was wonderful to meet some people who have engaged with this a genda on & offline:

  1. Basis of @BuddyappUK -using SMS messages to compile mood diaries etc and inform therapy #ementalhealth pic.twitter.com/PE86P5Hjx8
  2. Inspirational talk from @BigWhiteWall1 ‘Without people it (technology) is just a pile of s….stuff’ #ementalhealth
  3. it was great to see you as always – thanks so much for coming & contributing to the #ementalhealth conference @MyOxygenMobile
  4. @S_Amani followed #ementalhealth online – really interesting debates about the role of digital technology – well done to you & the team!
  5. @S_Amani thanks Sarah for great event today #ementalhealth some really interesting discussions.
  6. Interesting day; Paul Irwin’s session mind blowing. And by sending this tweet, I’m fulfilling one of my pledges! #ementalhealth
  7. Amazing story from @PaulRIrwin so very inspiring #ementalhealth TryLife brilliant way to engage young people
  8. Young people….struggling with choices…why not try all of them…safely? trylife.tv #ementalhealth @PaulRIrwin
  9. Thank you @VictoriaBetton It would be a pleasure to meet you & compare notes, so hopefully we will catch up soon #ementalhealth
  10. @S_Amani followed #ementalhealth online – really interesting debates about the role of digital technology – well done to you & the team!
  11. Hi @VictoriaBetton it went really well, still buzzing from the collective energy from the guests & the stimulating debates #ementalhealth
  12. @samanthallen @withoutstigma thanks, good to meet you too 🙂 #ementalhealth was a thought provoking event wasn’t it – good to share ideas
  13. @uk_james Yes and long may the sharing and collaborating continue #ementalhealth
  14. @uk_james Yes and long may the sharing and collaborating continue #ementalhealth
  15. @samanthallen @withoutstigma thanks, good to meet you too 🙂 #ementalhealth was a thought provoking event wasn’t it – good to share ideas
E-Mental Health - Whats All the Fuss About?

Courtesy of NHS Confederation Mental Health Network

About Sarah

I am a mental health nurse with 10 years experience working with people with a lived experience and their carers. I have very little interest in focusing on what is wrong with people and prefer to focus on people's aspirations and what is right with them. I care about equality and the small things that remind us of the bigger picture. I love art, music, novel ideas, psychology, science and the way in which these various entities intersect. I am blogging in an entirely personal capacity. My views do not reflect my employer's.

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Me

I am a mental health nurse turned manager who enjoys live music and gadgets. I have recently taken up photography as a way to keep sane whilst I am studying for my Msc in Health Care Management.

I am very passionate about my work which I find rewarding and enlightening. I am blogging in an entirely personal capacity. My views do not reflect those of my employer.

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