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6 March, 2019 - 14:21 By Tony Quested

Ieso takes world-first AI-enabled mental health treatment platform live

Mental health technology innovator Ieso Digital Health in Cambridge is integrating Artificial Intelligence into its therapist platform for the first time. 

The move will enable therapists in the UK and US to receive data-led insights about each patient during the assessment stage of treatment, providing them with predictions of a patient's presenting condition, severity of presentation and likelihood of completing a full course of therapy It is the first time AI has been deployed in this way on an international scale.

Ieso, which provides live, one-to-one, cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) online on behalf of the NHS and some of the America’s biggest healthcare providers, is the only company using AI to assist therapists treating patients who suffer from mental health conditions. It is the first time deep learning tools are being used to support clinicians in this context.

The new feature, known as the clinical decision support tool, will be made available to Ieso’s therapists in the UK with a phased release planned with Ieso’s US customers throughout the year. 

The clinical decision support tool is available via Ieso’s bespoke online therapy platform, which runs on Microsoft Azure. The tool has been built using advanced data science techniques to analyse the data from tens-of-thousands of cases of online therapy.

The clinical decision support tool uses AI to advise clinicians on a patient’s primary presenting problem. This gives them the best chance of making an accurate, evidence-based diagnosis, and enables the delivery of more effective treatment. It will also help therapists identify patients who are likely to drop out of treatment, allowing them to take action to increase chances of recovery.

Ieso’s method of delivering CBT through written conversation means that, unlike spoken sessions, the efficacy of treatments can be measured, improved, and ultimately tailored to the person receiving it. 

The data science team have extracted the raw, anonymised, information from a self-assessment questionnaire that all new patients fill out.

Sarah Bateup, chief clinical officer at Ieso, says: “This is an incredibly important milestone in our efforts to push recovery rates to the highest that have been seen in psychological therapy services. 

“Our therapists all receive training to the highest standard, but we believe that our AI technology will be an important reflective tool for them, allowing them access to the experience of hundreds of colleagues instantaneously.

“It is my belief that this will help shape the way we measure, improve, tailor and deliver CBT for years to come. This is only the beginning, but it’s an important start.”

Dr Valentin Tablan, senior VP of AI at Ieso, adds: “The treatment of physical health conditions have long benefited from advances of technology, with devices such as X-Ray and MRI scanners revolutionising treatment. 

“Now, as AI and machine learning technology evolves, it is important that we integrate it into the treatment of mental health, so those patients too may benefit from the advancement of technology.

“We hope to engage with the NHS and other partners to continue to develop this technology. Only by working together as a community can we help make sure that everyone receives the mental health support they need when they need it.”

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