Developing Standards For Mental Health Apps Essay

1532 Words7 Pages
Developing Standards for Mental Health Apps Of the more than 165,000 health apps on the market, a sizeable number of these are targeted at users with mental health issues. With so many apps readily available for anyone to download and use, there is a growing number of concerns regarding the lack of standards for these apps and the potential impact on users. "There is no governing body, oversight, or approval process that apps have to go through," says Ken R. Weingardt, PhD, Scientific Director at the Center for Behavioral Intervention Technologies and an Associate Professor in the Department of Preventive Medicine at Northwestern University 's Feinberg School of Medicine. “The need for some sort of oversight or standards is very much on everyone 's radar.” "The FDA has taken a hands-off approach to apps in general," says John Torous, MD, Co-Director of the Digital Psychiatry Program at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. Dr. Torous also serves as a staff psychiatrist and clinical informatics fellow at the center, and is Editor-in-chief for JMIR Mental Health, the leading eHealth journal on technology and mental health. General Wellness vs. Mental Health Apps Dr. Torous explains that with the barriers to entry for app developers being as low as they are, anyone can put out a mental health app and make bold claims about it. As a result, the arena has been flooded with thousands of apps of differing quality and reliability. In such an environment, it can be
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