Data_Sheet_1_A Systematic Evaluation of Mobile Health Applications for the Prevention of Suicidal Behavior or Non-suicidal Self-injury.pdf (709.7 kB)
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Data_Sheet_1_A Systematic Evaluation of Mobile Health Applications for the Prevention of Suicidal Behavior or Non-suicidal Self-injury.pdf

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posted on 26.07.2021, 05:15 authored by Lasse B. Sander, Marie-Luise Lemor, Racine J. A. Van der Sloot, Eva De Jaegere, Rebekka Büscher, Eva-Maria Messner, Harald Baumeister, Yannik Terhorst

People with suicidal ideation and non-suicidal self-injury (NSSI) behavior face numerous barriers to help-seeking, which worsened during the COVID-19 pandemic. Mobile health applications (MHA) are discussed as one solution to improve healthcare. However, the commercial app markets are growing unregulated and rapidly, leading to an inscrutable market. This study evaluates the quality, features, functions, and prevention strategies of MHA for people with suicidal ideation and NSSI. An automatic search engine identified MHA for suicidal behavior and NSSI in the European commercial app stores. MHA quality and general characteristics were assessed using the Mobile Application Rating Scale (MARS). MHA of high quality (top 25%) were examined in detail and checked for consistency with established suicide prevention strategies. Of 10,274 identified apps, 179 MHA met the predefined inclusion criteria. Average MHA quality was moderate (M = 3.56, SD = 0.40). Most MHA provided emergency contact, but lacked security features. High-quality MHA were broadly consistent with the best-practice guidelines. The search revealed apps containing potentially harmful and triggering content, and no randomized controlled trial of any included MHA was found. Despite a large heterogeneity in the quality of MHA, high-quality MHA for suicidal behavior and NSSI are available in European commercial app stores. However, a lack of a scientific evidence base poses potential threats to users.

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