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NOTEWORTHY

07/13/12

Got a Mental Health Issue? There’s an App for That

The group of psychiatrists who joined forces with technology experts to develop the WhatsMyM3 says it will enable general practitioners to quickly and accurately identify patients most in need of referral to a mental health specialist.Based on responses to a new, three-minute screening designed to detect early signs of depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, and PTSD, users are given a number that reflects their mental health risk. The number enables users for the first time to monitor their mental health by tracking their “M3 number” the same way patients monitor cholesterol and blood pressure numbers. 

The WhatsMyM3 screening can be taken:

A primary score of 33 or greater indicates a significant risk of a mood or anxiety disorder. Also reported are four sub-scores, reflecting the individual’s risk for each of the four major conditions—depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, and PTSD. WhatsMyM3 also screens for suicide risk and substance abuse, offering immediate telephone hotline access with immediate instructional support.

WhatsMyM3 is designed to be integrated in doctors’ offices via M3Clinician.com, a cloud-based portal that interfaces with many electronic medical records applications and is reimbursable through third-party payers. 

Research-based

The M3 Checklist was validated in a study performed at the University of North Carolina and published in the March 2010 issue of the Annals of Family Medicine. The study was based on the responses of 647 patients at the University of North Carolina Family Practice Medicine Clinic .
Since the publication of the study in March 2010, the Beta version M3 Checklist has been taken by people in all 50 states and in more than 120 countries.

The M3 Score provides a single rating of general mental health

The M3 score represents the likelihood that the symptoms disclosed reflect a clinically significant disorder. A University of North Carolina study of the M3 has shown that among patients with no diagnosis, 83 percent receive an M3 Score below 33, whereas 81 percent of those with confirmed diagnoses fall above this threshold. 

The higher the M3 score, the more likely the patient’s responses are clinically significant and the symptoms reported are having a real impact on quality of life. 

During the research phase, it became the #1 iTunes for depression, and people from 160 countries have already taken the screening online.

 
World Health Organization (WHO) Draws Attention to Three Mental-Health-Related Books

The three books that the WHO promoted to Mark National Mental Health Awareness Month in May are each related to mental health:

  • Mental Health Atlas 2011: The atlas represents the latest estimate of global mental health resources available to prevent and treat mental disorders and help protect the human rights of people living with these conditions. The book presents data from 184 WHO Member States, covering 98 percent of the world’s population. Facts and figures presented in Atlas indicate that resources for mental health remain inadequate.
  • Module on Mental Health: Integrating Poverty and Gender into Health Programmes: A Sourcebook for Health Professionals: This module on mental health is designed to improve the awareness, knowledge, and skills of health providers on poverty and gender concerns. It is divided into six sections. Section 1 defines mental illness and general principles for the treatment of mental illness. Section 2 examines the links between poverty, gender, and mental health, focusing on depression and anxiety. Section 3 discusses why it is important for health professionals to address poverty and gender concerns in mental health, from efficiency, equity, and human rights perspectives. Section 4 discusses how health professionals and the healthcare system can address poverty and gender concerns in mental health with the support of policy legislation, program planning implementation, and service delivery. Section 5 provides notes for training facilitators. Finally, section 6 is a collection of tools, resources, and references to support health professionals in their work in this field.
  • Mental Health and Development: Targeting People with Mental Health Conditions as a Vulnerable Group: This book presents compelling evidence that people with mental health conditions meet major criteria for vulnerability and yet have been excluded from development aid and government attention all over the world. It makes the case for reaching out to this group through the design and implementation of appropriate policies and programs and through the inclusion of mental health interventions into broader poverty reduction and development strategies.


Promoting Your Practice Online Tip #11:  Targeting Keywords

By Sara K. Sims, Director of Business Development, TherapySites.com

We’ve all done it—we Google ourselves to see what information comes up, or where our business website appears in search results. That’s good! It can help you to position yourself.

But are you searching for the same terms a client will search for? Are you searching for both the specialization and the location you serve? If you are that’s great, as it gives you a more realistic diagnostic of how effectively your search engine optimization is working for you. But do the pages on your website reflect the information gained from your searches?

The goal of search engine optimization is to make sure that people who might be interested in your services see your website. This may seem obvious, but often when considering search engine optimization, this important component is overlooked. For example, if you are providing mental healthcare in New York City, you want visitors to your site who are looking for mental health care in New York City and surrounding areas.

One way to accomplish this is through well-placed keywords. Ensuring that you target the keywords you use on your site can be a crucial step in the search engine optimization (SEO) process. By picking the right keywords for your area and your specialties, you can not only raise your online visibility, but bring in more potential clients.

First, I’ll demonstrate how targeted keywords produce better search results, then I’ll show you how to take advantage of targeted key phrases in your SEO.

What are targeted keywords?

Targeted keywords are words or phrases that include more information than the most general possible phrasing; that is they are “targeted” to what a user is actually searching for. For instance, the search term “divorce therapist, Berkeley” is a typical search term someone might use if they were looking for a mental health counselor in Berkeley, Calif., who specializes in divorce. So, if you specialize in divorce in Berkeley you would want those specific words on your website, so that the search engine pulls up your website when someone is searching for the services you offer. 

You may be saying, “This is great information, and I can see how a user might want to incorporate more targeted keywords when searching the Internet, but how does this help me, the website owner?” 

Targeted keywords are critical to successful search engine optimization because they allow you to directly connect with an audience that is searching for you, your location, and your specialties.

A properly optimized website for a mental health counselor in Berkeley may not come up in the first page (or first 10 pages!) in a Google search for the term “therapist.” It will, however, be highly ranked when doing a targeted search for the relevant terms (e.g., “therapy in Berkeley”). The easiest way to incorporate these targeted keywords into your site is to directly include them in page content (or sidebar). 

If I were a mental health counselor in Berkeley, I would make sure that my site prominently mentioned that we proudly served Berkeley, and the greater Bay Area. Such information is helpful not only to human visitors who are looking for more information regarding your practice, but also to the machines that are determining where to place your site in their search results.

These are just a couple of ways to incorporate targeted keywords into your website design. By focusing on keywords that target both your locality and your specialties, you can help drive not only more traffic to your site, but also “better” traffic—that is, clients in your area, who are more likely to contact you. 

If you have any questions about how to specifically integrate targeted keywords onto your TherapySites site, just send us an email, or give us a call, and any of our search engine optimization technicians would be happy to help you. You can reach me at YourCyberGuru@gmail.com.

AMHCA’s partnership with TherapySites.com lets members to create an easy-to-edit, affordable, and effective website in less than an hour. Plus, AMHCA has negotiated a special deal for you to receive your first month FREE with TherapySites. Just enter promo code “AMHCA” at sign up.

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