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Online chronic disease management program

Online program for chronic disease self-management in BC and Yukon

The University of Victoria’s Centre on Aging is offering a free online version of Stanford University’s evidence-based chronic disease self-management program. The program is available to adult residents of British Columbia and the Yukon living with any long-term physical or mental health condition. Participants get tools that help them manage symptoms, make lifestyle changes and learn to communicate effectively with their health care team. More information is available at www.selfmanage.org/onlinebc or 1-866-902-3767.

 

Take a tour of Canada's first fully digital hospital

The Humber River Hospital in Toronto recently opened its doors after redevelopment to become the first fully digital hospital in Canada. The hospital has incorporated latest technologies throughout its facility to improve safety, efficiency and patient experience. For example, robots help to automate the preparation, dispensing and delivery of chemotherapy treatments and medications. The hospital also features state-of-the-art radiology, CT and MRI equipment, as well as digitally integrated patient rooms. 
Humber River Hospital patient rooms
   Image from The Toronto Star

 

Apple's ResearchKit adds studies for autism, epilepsy and melanoma
 

Apple ResearchKitApple announced that its ResearchKit tool will be expanded to enable users to participate in autism, epilepsy and melanoma research. ResearchKit allows iPhone users to join and send data to medical studies via their phone. Apps for diabetes, asthma, breast cancer, Parkinson's disease and cardiovascular disease research have already been available from Apple's App Store since March 2015. However, none of the apps are yet available in Canada. 

 

Image from apple.com 

 

 

Wading through the growing sea of mental health apps

In an ever-growing app market, there remains the problem of ensuring programs are back by evidence. The UK National Health Service (NHS) Health Apps Library is often cited as a credible source for app information. However, a recent article in British Medical Journal's Evidence-Based Mental Health shows that even of the apps accredited by the NHS, 85% are not backed by evidence. The NHS has since removed its recommendations for re-evaluation. 

Though coming no closer to a conclusion, VICE recently looked at some of the market's more popular mental health apps in an attempt to answer the question "Can an app really help manage your mental health?".