Acceptability and utility of an electronic psychosocial assessment (myAssessment) to increase self-disclosure in youth mental healthcare: A quasi-experimental study

Sally Bradford, Debra RICKWOOD

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

11 Citations (Scopus)
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Abstract

Background
Technology is increasingly being used in youth mental healthcare to support service delivery and improve health outcomes. The current study trialed a new electronic psychosocial application (myAssessment) that aims to provide a holistic assessment of relevant risk and protective factors in youth mental healthcare. The study aimed to determine whether myAssessment was acceptable to all users, and whether it affected: reporting of certain behaviors and ratings of self-disclosure; youth ratings of control, fears of judgmental reactions or time-efficiency; clinician ratings of time-efficiency or their ability to formulate a treatment plan; and the therapeutic alliance.
Method
The application was tested at a youth mental health service using a quasi-experimental two phase Treatment-as-Usual/Intervention design. Three hundred thirty nine youth and 13 clinicians participated across both phases. Reporting of behaviors, self-disclosure, youth control, judgmental reactions, time efficiency, ability to formulate treatment plans, and the therapeutic alliance were compared between groups.
Results
myAssessment was found to be widely accepted by both young people and clinicians. Use of myAssessment resulted in reporting of behaviors that were 2.78 through 10.38 times higher for a variety of substances (use of tobacco, alcohol, cannabis, sedatives, hallucinogens, and opioids), in identifying non-heterosexual sexual orientation, having had sex, an STI check, sex without a condom, having felt pressured to have sex in the past, having self-harmed, and in having put themselves in an unsafe situation. Participants who used the application also reported being less likely to lie on past experiences of being bullied, substance use, and self-harm. Use of the application resulted in improved youth ratings of time efficiency in session. The application was found to have no impact on youth control, judgmental reactions, formulation of treatment plans, or the therapeutic alliance.
Conclusions
Electronic psychosocial assessments can increase rates of self-disclosure and, therefore, provide an earlier and more comprehensive picture of young people’s risks without negatively impacting the therapeutic alliance. Additionally, this type of technology has been shown to be widely accepted by both young people and clinicians and can improve youth beliefs that there is enough time in session to speak about what is most important to them.
Original languageEnglish
Article number305
Pages (from-to)305-317
Number of pages13
JournalBMC Psychiatry
Volume15
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2015

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Self Disclosure
Delivery of Health Care
Efficiency
Aptitude
Therapeutics
Hallucinogens
Non-Randomized Controlled Trials
Bullying
Condoms
Mental Health Services
Tobacco Use
Cannabis
Sexually Transmitted Diseases
Hypnotics and Sedatives
Sexual Behavior
Opioid Analgesics
Reaction Time
Fear
Alcohols
Technology

Cite this

@article{a9ba899465fd436187d59caec2cabf6a,
title = "Acceptability and utility of an electronic psychosocial assessment (myAssessment) to increase self-disclosure in youth mental healthcare: A quasi-experimental study",
abstract = "BackgroundTechnology is increasingly being used in youth mental healthcare to support service delivery and improve health outcomes. The current study trialed a new electronic psychosocial application (myAssessment) that aims to provide a holistic assessment of relevant risk and protective factors in youth mental healthcare. The study aimed to determine whether myAssessment was acceptable to all users, and whether it affected: reporting of certain behaviors and ratings of self-disclosure; youth ratings of control, fears of judgmental reactions or time-efficiency; clinician ratings of time-efficiency or their ability to formulate a treatment plan; and the therapeutic alliance.MethodThe application was tested at a youth mental health service using a quasi-experimental two phase Treatment-as-Usual/Intervention design. Three hundred thirty nine youth and 13 clinicians participated across both phases. Reporting of behaviors, self-disclosure, youth control, judgmental reactions, time efficiency, ability to formulate treatment plans, and the therapeutic alliance were compared between groups.ResultsmyAssessment was found to be widely accepted by both young people and clinicians. Use of myAssessment resulted in reporting of behaviors that were 2.78 through 10.38 times higher for a variety of substances (use of tobacco, alcohol, cannabis, sedatives, hallucinogens, and opioids), in identifying non-heterosexual sexual orientation, having had sex, an STI check, sex without a condom, having felt pressured to have sex in the past, having self-harmed, and in having put themselves in an unsafe situation. Participants who used the application also reported being less likely to lie on past experiences of being bullied, substance use, and self-harm. Use of the application resulted in improved youth ratings of time efficiency in session. The application was found to have no impact on youth control, judgmental reactions, formulation of treatment plans, or the therapeutic alliance.ConclusionsElectronic psychosocial assessments can increase rates of self-disclosure and, therefore, provide an earlier and more comprehensive picture of young people’s risks without negatively impacting the therapeutic alliance. Additionally, this type of technology has been shown to be widely accepted by both young people and clinicians and can improve youth beliefs that there is enough time in session to speak about what is most important to them.",
keywords = "Adolescence, Mental health, Psychosocial assessment, Self-disclosure, Technology, Youth, Australian Capital Territory/epidemiology, Bullying, Humans, Mental Health/statistics & numerical data, Electronics, Male, Self-Injurious Behavior/epidemiology, Patient Satisfaction, Young Adult, Psychiatric Status Rating Scales, Adult, Female, Surveys and Questionnaires, Child, Judgment, Deception, Sexual Behavior/statistics & numerical data, Self Disclosure, Substance-Related Disorders/epidemiology, Biomedical Technology, Adolescent, Mental Health Services/statistics & numerical data",
author = "Sally Bradford and Debra RICKWOOD",
year = "2015",
doi = "10.1186/s12888-015-0694-4",
language = "English",
volume = "15",
pages = "305--317",
journal = "BMC Psychiatry",
issn = "1471-244X",
publisher = "BioMed Central",
number = "1",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Acceptability and utility of an electronic psychosocial assessment (myAssessment) to increase self-disclosure in youth mental healthcare: A quasi-experimental study

AU - Bradford, Sally

AU - RICKWOOD, Debra

PY - 2015

Y1 - 2015

N2 - BackgroundTechnology is increasingly being used in youth mental healthcare to support service delivery and improve health outcomes. The current study trialed a new electronic psychosocial application (myAssessment) that aims to provide a holistic assessment of relevant risk and protective factors in youth mental healthcare. The study aimed to determine whether myAssessment was acceptable to all users, and whether it affected: reporting of certain behaviors and ratings of self-disclosure; youth ratings of control, fears of judgmental reactions or time-efficiency; clinician ratings of time-efficiency or their ability to formulate a treatment plan; and the therapeutic alliance.MethodThe application was tested at a youth mental health service using a quasi-experimental two phase Treatment-as-Usual/Intervention design. Three hundred thirty nine youth and 13 clinicians participated across both phases. Reporting of behaviors, self-disclosure, youth control, judgmental reactions, time efficiency, ability to formulate treatment plans, and the therapeutic alliance were compared between groups.ResultsmyAssessment was found to be widely accepted by both young people and clinicians. Use of myAssessment resulted in reporting of behaviors that were 2.78 through 10.38 times higher for a variety of substances (use of tobacco, alcohol, cannabis, sedatives, hallucinogens, and opioids), in identifying non-heterosexual sexual orientation, having had sex, an STI check, sex without a condom, having felt pressured to have sex in the past, having self-harmed, and in having put themselves in an unsafe situation. Participants who used the application also reported being less likely to lie on past experiences of being bullied, substance use, and self-harm. Use of the application resulted in improved youth ratings of time efficiency in session. The application was found to have no impact on youth control, judgmental reactions, formulation of treatment plans, or the therapeutic alliance.ConclusionsElectronic psychosocial assessments can increase rates of self-disclosure and, therefore, provide an earlier and more comprehensive picture of young people’s risks without negatively impacting the therapeutic alliance. Additionally, this type of technology has been shown to be widely accepted by both young people and clinicians and can improve youth beliefs that there is enough time in session to speak about what is most important to them.

AB - BackgroundTechnology is increasingly being used in youth mental healthcare to support service delivery and improve health outcomes. The current study trialed a new electronic psychosocial application (myAssessment) that aims to provide a holistic assessment of relevant risk and protective factors in youth mental healthcare. The study aimed to determine whether myAssessment was acceptable to all users, and whether it affected: reporting of certain behaviors and ratings of self-disclosure; youth ratings of control, fears of judgmental reactions or time-efficiency; clinician ratings of time-efficiency or their ability to formulate a treatment plan; and the therapeutic alliance.MethodThe application was tested at a youth mental health service using a quasi-experimental two phase Treatment-as-Usual/Intervention design. Three hundred thirty nine youth and 13 clinicians participated across both phases. Reporting of behaviors, self-disclosure, youth control, judgmental reactions, time efficiency, ability to formulate treatment plans, and the therapeutic alliance were compared between groups.ResultsmyAssessment was found to be widely accepted by both young people and clinicians. Use of myAssessment resulted in reporting of behaviors that were 2.78 through 10.38 times higher for a variety of substances (use of tobacco, alcohol, cannabis, sedatives, hallucinogens, and opioids), in identifying non-heterosexual sexual orientation, having had sex, an STI check, sex without a condom, having felt pressured to have sex in the past, having self-harmed, and in having put themselves in an unsafe situation. Participants who used the application also reported being less likely to lie on past experiences of being bullied, substance use, and self-harm. Use of the application resulted in improved youth ratings of time efficiency in session. The application was found to have no impact on youth control, judgmental reactions, formulation of treatment plans, or the therapeutic alliance.ConclusionsElectronic psychosocial assessments can increase rates of self-disclosure and, therefore, provide an earlier and more comprehensive picture of young people’s risks without negatively impacting the therapeutic alliance. Additionally, this type of technology has been shown to be widely accepted by both young people and clinicians and can improve youth beliefs that there is enough time in session to speak about what is most important to them.

KW - Adolescence

KW - Mental health

KW - Psychosocial assessment

KW - Self-disclosure

KW - Technology

KW - Youth

KW - Australian Capital Territory/epidemiology

KW - Bullying

KW - Humans

KW - Mental Health/statistics & numerical data

KW - Electronics

KW - Male

KW - Self-Injurious Behavior/epidemiology

KW - Patient Satisfaction

KW - Young Adult

KW - Psychiatric Status Rating Scales

KW - Adult

KW - Female

KW - Surveys and Questionnaires

KW - Child

KW - Judgment

KW - Deception

KW - Sexual Behavior/statistics & numerical data

KW - Self Disclosure

KW - Substance-Related Disorders/epidemiology

KW - Biomedical Technology

KW - Adolescent

KW - Mental Health Services/statistics & numerical data

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UR - http://www.mendeley.com/research/acceptability-utility-electronic-psychosocial-assessment-myassessment-increase-selfdisclosure-youth

U2 - 10.1186/s12888-015-0694-4

DO - 10.1186/s12888-015-0694-4

M3 - Article

VL - 15

SP - 305

EP - 317

JO - BMC Psychiatry

JF - BMC Psychiatry

SN - 1471-244X

IS - 1

M1 - 305

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