Annual Conference

TheMHS 2014 S069: Computer/ Internet Assisting Recovery

By August 29, 2014 No Comments

You can read the abstract for this session here.

Using internet to integrate peer stories and self-management resources into mental health services: The Self-Management and Recovery Technology (SMART) program.

The SMART program, is an online tool which is still in the process of completion. The program aims to be a mental health resource, which is not only for personal use but also to be integrated into practice as a tool for staff. Neil described the SMART program as a dynamic tool, which can help staff initiate discussion on recovery. It was also highlighted that the SMART program can be used as a tool that people can access without having to go through a mental health service if they wish and will be free of charge to its users.

 The program will work off the recovery focuses of fostering:

  • Connectedness
  • Hope
  • Identity
  • Meaning in life
  • Empowerment

The program also incorporates a strong peer element, using role models to motivate individuals to participate in change. The SMART resource has done this by compiling stories of individuals in the recovery process and made 30 different videos for its users to watch and connect with, to complement the different theory modules. It has also used a forum style commenting system on the video’s to further foster peer connectedness on the site. It is funded by the Victorian Health Department, in the mental health research sector and is a one of five programs which are being funded to maximise recovery.

The SMART program began by reaching out to mental health consumers and providers and asking what it was they would like to see most in an online service. It was stated that the concept was positively received, with the main aspect that the tool needed to have being flexibility. 

The tool will be available towards the end of 2014.