According to the California Health Care Foundation, from
2012-2014, nearly 20% of Californian adults who sought mental health treatment
did not receive it. It is believed that these figures may even be understated,
as The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) has cited that
nearly 60% of American adults with mental illness do not receive any treatment.
Unmet mental health
needs in California are attributed to a lack of access to appropriate services
and providers, as well as the cost of care, a factor that is often exacerbated
by a lack of health insurance.

While traditional
mental health services play an important role in supporting those in need,
novel technologies can complement standard care delivery and provide
individuals and communities with more accessible and optimized mental health
services that focus on prevention, early intervention, family support, and
social connectedness. 

The Help@Hand Project is a California statewide collaborative project to bring technology-based mental health solutions to the public mental health system through a highly innovative “suite” of digital solutions. The project aims to expand access to mental health services by engaging and treating individuals that are underserved in the current traditional care delivery model. With technology becoming an integral part of everyday life, the collaborative hopes to leverage familiar devices as means to connect and better serve those in need. This Help@Hand project will utilize applications on smartphones, tablets, digital devices, or computers as a tool to engage, support and give access to treatment using innovative virtual engagement strategies. Focus areas include:

Peer Chat
and Digital TherapeuticsVirtual
Evidence Based Therapy Utilizing an AvatarPassive
Data Collection for Early Detection and Intervention

The California Mental
Health Services Authority (CalMHSA) is an independent administrative and fiscal
government agency focused on the efficient delivery of California mental health
projects. CalMHSA members work together to develop, fund, and implement mental
health services, projects, and educational programs. As of June 2019, 56

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