The Public Health team at Hertfordshire County Council have partnered with the University of Southampton to offer local people access to a FREE stress management app and online tool (Healthy Mind) that is based on the best available evidence.
‘Healthy Mind’ was developed by psychologists and health professionals at the University of Southampton and Palo Alto University, US. It is suitable for any adult (aged 18 years or over) and offers a range of different tools that support and encourage the user to improve their mood and/or deal with stress and other negative emotions in positive, healthy ways. ‘Healthy Mind’ is delivered via a stand-alone app that is compatible with Android Smartphones or tablets. A ‘Healthy Mind’ website is also available for those who do not own an Android Smartphone/tablet.
Healthy Mind has been evaluated in a pilot study run by researchers at the University of Southampton. People who have used Healthy Mind reported that:
- It helped them deal with stress
- It was clear and easy to use
- It was different from tools they’d used before
We are now able to offer Healthy Mind to people via their workplaces. The researchers will monitor whether people sign up for the tool, how they use it, and whether it helps them to deal with stress and negative mood better.
- The planned roll out is from September 2014 and is FREE for both the employer and employee.
- Although the roll out is being undertaken as a research study employers don’t need to do any research-related tasks. Participants simply use Healthy Mind and fill in quick online questionnaires to help the researchers to evaluate it.
- Healthy Mind does not require any special software. There are no videos/audio files that would result in a large demand on your IT network.
- Healthy Mind can be used on any Android Smartphone or any computer with an internet connection. Ideally, we’d like people to access the tool at work and home and will happily work with your IT department to resolve any issues but at the same time appreciate that you might want employees to only complete the tool at home.
- Workplaces that decide to take part will be provided with all the materials that you will need to encourage employees to try out Healthy Mind including wording for emails to inform employees about Healthy Mind and posters.
- The study has full ethical approval from the University of Southampton. Confidentiality will be maintained and data will be stored in accordance with the Data Protection Act on the University’s secure servers.
There will be a trial launch on the 2nd September 2014 for employers to register their interest, with a strict sign up deadline of the 9th September 2014. There will be national publicity plus regional launches in the North East of England.
If you would like to more information on the Healthy Mind trial and how you can offer the tool in your workplace or if you would like an information pack please contact Dr Leanne Morrison on L.Morrison@soton.ac.uk.