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Future development of digital psychotherapy will need to address concerns regarding efficacy, privacy, data security, and methods to enhance motivation to use these treatments.At fault for poor utilization are transportation, time commitment (psychotherapy is typically delivered in weekly, hour-long appointments in a clinician’s office), and supply-side barriers, with too few professionals living in rural areas.Our respondents were equally distributed across urban (51.8%) and rural (48.2%) locales in the U. Approximately half (n = 81, 49.4%) of the respondents had previously received individual in-person psychotherapy from a licensed clinician, and 17.1% (n = 28) had used a mobile app for self-help or self-monitoring of depressive symptoms.Owing to a survey error, we were not able to accurately determine gender distribution; the survey program failed to populate this variable.Participants were asked to select barriers they had previously encountered when considering in-person psychotherapy; the top three barriers endorsed by this sample were cost (48.2%), insurance limitations (26.8%), and stigma (26.2%).There were no demographic differences in the endorsement of barriers.
Digital treatment has the potential to address these barriers, yet long term use of digital psychotherapy is poor.
The stigma that many cultural groups have related to seeking care also is noted as an important utilization barrier.
A potential solution to overcome these barriers is providing treatment via digital means, such as on-line tools and mobile applications (apps).
Currently, digital psychotherapy consists of self-guided digital treatment, in which consumers use web-based and app-based care to apply therapeutic principles without any additional support; peer-guided digital treatment, in which consumers use digital devices with access to trained peer support specialists who support and guide their use of the treatment program; and expert-guided digital treatment, in which consumers use digital devices with help from a professional.
Studies find that digital interventions are efficacious, Healthcare organizations around the globe offer digital tools to their depressed patients and a new healthcare industry based on fee-for-service, subscription based digital treatment has emerged in the US.