Personalizing mental health care

Harvard Business Review (HBR) features an article by Jonathan Woodson, MD, Larz Anderson Professor in Management and Director – BU Institute for Health Systems Innovation and his colleagues Jayakanth Srinivasan, Millard D. Brown, and Christopher G. Ivany. The article  focuses on the U.S. Army’s implementation of precise treatments for war-related behavioral conditions.

Personalization is playing a huge role in transforming an assortment of fields. Yet, in recent years, mental health care seems to have been left behind in the race. But the U.S. Army’s efforts at improving mental health care issues for its war-affected soldiers could prove to be an example for the civilian world to draw on.

In their article published by HBR, the authors mention that various reasons account for a lack of systematic means of data collection for mental health care in the United States. Earlier, the Army had no way of determining whether more precision was required in tailoring their mental healthcare treatments for soldiers. The process for data collection was manual, time consuming and prone to errors. This changed with the introduction of a system called Behavioral Health Data Portal (BHDP). The system made patient health data collection, monitoring and individualized feedback seamless, enabling the Army to address individual patient needs over a period of time.

Woodson and his colleagues also demonstrate the advantages of BHDP with multiple examples and suggest that implementation of such measures will benefit the wider health care system in the long run.

Read more about how the U.S. Army personalized its mental health in the article on Harvard Business Review.

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