Kooth and iPlato collaborate to enable self referrals to patient support platform
Kooth has partnered with myGP, developed by iPlato, to improve access to mental health services by cutting waiting times for NHS patients and reducing the strain on GPs.
The collaboration between the two services will offer NHS patients using iPlato’s myGP app the ability to self refer to the Kooth digital mental health platform.
The partnership, which is currently being piloted across 12 regions in England, ahead of its rollout later this year, means patients can self refer to see a clinician 24 hours a day, seven days a week, providing patients with access to an anonymous channel of support with very little wait time.
myGP is consistently one of the UKs most-frequently-downloaded healthcare management apps, currently boasting almost 2.4million users.
It enables patients to book GP appointments, order repeat prescriptions, receive vital updates from healthcare professionals, and, increasingly, self refer to other NHS services.
Early intervention and access to support is crucial in helping to prevent mental issues from spiralling out of control and can have a significant positive impact on the course of mental illness
And this helps to speed up the journey to care, relieving some of the burden on the NHS by reducing unnecessary GP appointments.
Founded in 2001, Kooth is the only digital mental health provider to hold a UK wide accreditation from the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy.
The easy-to-use platform offers a wide spectrum of pro-active and preventative digital mental health services and can be accessed via any internet connected device, such as a laptop, tablet, or smartphone.
Alongside the ability to book one-to-one sessions with experienced counsellors, users have access to a fully-safeguarded and pre-moderated community with a range of self-help materials.
From being able to read and contribute to self-help stories, seek peer-to-peer support via moderated discussion forums, and use personal tools such as an online journal and interactive goal tracker, myGP users will be able to personalise their own mental health support.
The myGP app helps mental health service users to access support
Tobias Alpsten, chief executive of myGP, said: “We are well aware the of current strains on the NHS and of how much of that strain is mental health-related; particularly given the collective trauma that we have all just lived through and the backlogs that the pandemic has caused within primary care.
“We’re delighted to partner with such a reputable mental health services provider; giving our users the opportunity to receive the care they need when they need it while giving our NHS partners a small amount of breathing space.”
Tim Barker, chief executive at Kooth, added: “The pandemic has turned all our lives upside down, and as such it’s never been more important to prioritise our mental health.
As it is a self-referral tool, it not only streamlines the mental health referral process and increases patient autonomy, but will also free up pressure on GPs and other healthcare professionals
“Early intervention and access to support is crucial in helping to prevent mental issues from spiralling out of control and can have a significant positive impact on the course of mental illness.
“Kooth helps to remove traditional barriers to care by providing immediate access to effective and confidential support.
“There is no one-size-fits-all solution to treating mental health, and what works for one, may not work for another.
“By partnering with iPlato and offering different therapeutic approaches, Kooth can be tailored to meet the needs of each myGP app user.
“And, as it is a self-referral tool, it not only streamlines the mental health referral process and increases patient autonomy, but will also free up pressure on GPs and other healthcare professionals.”