Looper App Well Positioned Global Impact

The executive team and investors at Social Health Innovations, Inc. are delighted to announce the viral success and product validation of it's propriety mental health check-in app, Looper.

In just 68 hours, the application has been downloaded in over 110 cities, across 25 countries, reaching all continents (with exception of Antarctica). 

The app will be available to a further 57 countries (South America and Africa), to be unlocked for download next week.

You can download the app today, for free, on both iOS and Android at www.bealooper.com

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Mental Health Check In App Looper is Launched Globally on iOS and Android

Looper is an app to keep you in the Loop with up to five people you care about. It’s now live and free to download on both iOS and Android. Head to the Apple or Google Play store and type “Be A Looper” to download today

“Social Health Innovations and Be A Looper are providing the best approach to suicide prevention I have ever seen: while the emphasis so far has been on professional intervention, the absolute value of those in the loop around us has never been galvanised so efficiently and meaningfully. SHI are changing the desperate face of helplessness and hopelessness with help and hope” - Dr Roy Sugarman

They researched, we listened and implemented. The importance of design for mental health technologies

Design Opportunities for Mental Health Peer Support Technologies - peer reviewed paper.

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Paper conclusion:

Technology plays an important role in peer support for mental health. Innovations in peer support tools for mental health could make a substantial difference to people with mental illnesses for whom the role of technology is “excruciatingly crucial,” “essential,” and “lifesaving,” as some of our participants indicated. 

Our research advocates opportunities to build tools that enhance supportive interactions for peers by: (1) surfacing similarities beyond diagnosis; (2) improving accessibility; and (3) proactively mitigating risk through training and intervention. The contributions of this work are an understanding of the expectations, roles, and risks of technology in peer support for people with a diverse range of mental illnesses, and identification of opportunities for technology design to foster mental health peer support. 

One of the major challenges facing mental health care today is the lack of professionals to meet the demand for care by 1 in 5 Americans. This work represents an important first step for informing the design of peer support tools that can bridge the gap in care, and empower peers to help each other. 

Read the full paper here: https://students.washington.edu/arpitab/olearyCSCW2017.pdf


Collaboration Call - Mental Health and Wellness

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The team at Social Health Innovations, Inc. are pleased to announce the global launch of Looper (Be A Looper App) on both iOS and Android on December 1. Looper allows a safe and engaging place for up to five people to check in with each other daily, to rate and share how their day is tracking and is completely free.

We invite any initiatives, technologies or support centres in the mental health and wellness space to reach out and connect - so we can add you to our resources centre within the app (where our users can go to get further help should they not be tracking well, or wish to support a fellow Looper in a crisis).

We look forward to hearing from you and supporting each other in our goal "To lower the suicide rate globally, through technology".

Expenditure on Mental Health Services - Australia

This section reviews the available information on recurrent expenditure (running costs) for mental health‑related services. Health expenditure (what was spent) and health funding (who provided the funds) are distinct but related concepts essential to understanding the financial resources used by the health system. Data on expenditure and funding, calculated in both current and constant prices, are derived from a variety of sources, as outlined in the data source section. Most data presented is for the 2014–15 period, therefore, constant prices are adjusted to 2014–15 levels, including more recent 2015–16 Australian Government Medicare expenditure and mental health-related medications subsidised under the PBS and RPBS expenditure data. Further information on health expenditure is available in Health expenditure Australia 2014–15 (AIHW 2016).

  • Around $8.5 billion, or $361 per person, was estimated to be spent on mental health-related services in Australia during 2014–15, an increase from $343 per person (adjusted for inflation) in 2010–11 (2014–15 dollars).
  • $5.2 billion was spent on state and territory specialised mental health services, an average annual real increase of 2.3% between 2010–11 and 2014–15. Of this, most was spent on public hospital services for admitted patients ($2.2 billion), followed by community mental health care services ($1.9 billion).

  • Expenditure on specialised mental health services in private hospitals was $433 million during 2014–15.

  • The Australian Government paid about $1.1 billion in benefits for Medicare-subsidised mental health‑related services in 2015–16, equating to 5.3% of all Medicare subsidies. Expenditure on psychologist services (clinical and other) ($489 million) made up the largest component of mental health‑related Medicare subsidies in 2015–16.

  • The Australian Government spent $564 million, or $24 per person, on subsidised prescriptions under the PBS/RPBS during 2015–16, equating to 5.0% of all PBS/RPBS subsidies. Prescriptions for antipsychotics (49.6%) and antidepressants (36.5%) accounted for the majority of mental health-related PBS and RPBS expenditure during this time period.

Read more: http://mhsa.aihw.gov.au/resources/expenditure/

PWC x Beyond Blue Report Shows Organisations can Expect a 2.3 ROI When Implementing Mentally Healthy Workplace Strategies.

Smart companies are making the investment in employee health including employee benefits such as gym memberships, healthy delivered lunches, employee rewards through programs such as Reward Gateway and extended leave, but is it enough to keep staff happy within the workplace?

Recent analysis has shown the annual cost of mental health to businesses costs $10 billion in Australia alone. To further elaborate, we have highlighted some key points from the PwC x Beyond Blue report ‘Creating a mentally healthy workplace‘ – ROI analysis, published March 20, 2014, are below:

  • Mental health conditions present substantial costs to organisations. However, through the successful implementation of an effective action to create a mentally healthy workplace, organisations, on average, can expect a positive return on investment (ROI) of 2.3.
  • Every $1 spent on successfully  implementing an appropriate action, there is on average $2.30 in benefits to be gained by the organisation.
  • The annual cost of mental health to Australian businesses is $10 billion and the economy $20 billion (Chair of the National Mental Health Commission).

We predict by 2020, companies will be investing more into the mental health of their staff, focusing on systems and networks which empower the employees to quickly utilise the support mechanisms. This will lead to a higher level of productivity, happiness and perhaps overall staff retention and of course, the 2.3 ROI.

You can download the PwC report here.

Mental Health Smartphone Apps: Review and Evidence-Based Recommendations for Future Developments

by David Bakker, B Psych (Hons),1 Nikolaos Kazantzis, PhD,1,2 Debra Rickwood, BA (Hons), PhD,3 and  Nikki Rickard, BBSc(Hons), PhD(Psych)4

"Average users check their phones as often as 150 times a day [2], which reflects how smartphone apps can generate, reward, and maintain strong habits involving their use [3,4]. Apps are also capable of implementing behavior change interventions [5], which may improve users’ physical health [6]."

Click here for the full paper: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4795320/#ref4


Disrupting Healthcare: The Technology And Innovation Making Waves

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As the CEO of healthcare technology company Social Health Innovations, I am asked daily about my insights into innovation in the healthcare sector. Here is a glimpse at what I have been privy to in the last 24 months:

Hospital to Drugstore / Pharmacy Datashare:
I was involved in due diligence in Q1 of 2014 for Ramsay Health Care surrounding the sharing of patient data from Ramsay Hospital sites across to Ramsay branded pharmacies/drugstores. I surveyed the target patient groups and the interest was overwhelming. There was resistance surrounding privacy - however I made reccomendations that patients could use fingerprint, voice or facial recognition technology to verify their patient records across the multiple sites. The innovation was well received by Paul Ramsay and the participants alike.

Apple ResearchKit is an open source framework introduced by Apple  that allows researchers and developers to create powerful apps for medical research. I would encourage you to check out some case studies on their website; the uptake amongst participants has been great. 

I have just written a short note on the importance of the urgent need of gamification of the health / wellness tech sector - you can give it a read here. I have no doubt there will be a huge shift in user experience / user interface design of current medical technology. 

A survey by New York University reported nearly half of mobile consumers/patients are resistant to uptake in the healthcare sector at the moment. We are using this as the backbone for our business at Social Health Innovations.

"I believe people should be as addicted to their mental health app, as they are to Facebook, Candy Crush or Tinder. The magic is in the design and constant iteration - the health sector MUST embrace gamification in order to keep patients engaged.


The PSFK Future of Health Report by Piers Fawkes is an exceptional download for anyone wanting to know more.

- Amanda Johnstone