New app hopes to help people with depression
In collaboration with the Ministry of Public Health, the Thai Health Promotion Foundation and the medicine and engineering faculties at Chulalongkorn University launched DMind, an application that features a deep-learning AI to diagnose people with depression.
According to Chulalongkorn Hospital, it is estimated that 1.5 million Thai people suffer from depression and it causes 4,000 deaths each year. Moreover, 53,000 people attempt suicide every year. However, accessing mental health services in Thailand is difficult due to staffing shortages and stigma associated with mental health disorders.
Developed by the Faculty of Engineering, the DMind app features a deep-learning AI that is able to screen and detect people with depression accurately through facial expression, voice and messages or content. The developer hopes that DMind will prevent severe depression and stop suicide attempts.
After users enter these portals, they must click on Truat Sukapap Jai (Mental Health Check) and take a test that involves gauging their emotions and physical state over a period of time. Users must allow the app to access their gadget's camera and microphone so that the AI "doctor" can interview them and provide a consultation. After the interview, the app will diagnose users into four levels -- normal, mild, moderate or severe.
DMind will have all severe cases contacted by healthcare workers to follow up as soon as possible. During one month of app testing, 82 out of 400 users were contacted and received assistance by mental health hotline operators.