Perspectives on the Use of eHealth in the Management of Patients With Schizophrenia


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Abstract

Mobile devices, digital technologies, and web-based applications—known collectively as eHealth (electronic health)—could improve health care delivery for costly, chronic diseases such as schizophrenia. Pharmacologic and psychosocial therapies represent the primary treatment for individuals with schizophrenia; however, extensive resources are required to support adherence, facilitate continuity of care, and prevent relapse and its sequelae. This paper addresses the use of eHealth in the management of schizophrenia based on a roundtable discussion with a panel of experts, which included psychiatrists, a medical technology innovator, a mental health advocate, a family caregiver, a health policy maker, and a third-party payor. The expert panel discussed the uses, benefits, and limitations of emerging eHealth with the capability to integrate care and extend service accessibility, monitor patient status in real time, enhance medication adherence, and empower patients to take a more active role in managing their disease. In summary, to support this technological future, eHealth requires significant research regarding implementation, patient barriers, policy, and funding.

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