#mentalhealth innovation fail at Health 2.0

So Poetry for Personal Power got selected for the finals of a business pitch competiton for #mentalhealth innovation. We earned the spot in the finals with almost double the crowd verification points of the other participants.  During the contest, we got the most crowd verification during the contest, we closed the most deals, we have the most useful product. So what happened? Silicon Valley health 2.0 glitz and no substance. Saying how nice it is to listen to patient advocates and not actually doing it.

Our team on stage during the #mentalhealth innovation pitch contest

Our team on stage during the #mentalhealth innovation pitch contest

We prepped a team to go to Santa Clara and make a pitch. They did a great job. We did all the user verification that was requested. We closed several deals right before the competition and listed them as directed. But we lost.

We request a public release of scores from this contest.

We lost to an electronic pillbox that reminds you to take your pills.  Well, this would be nice if the pills worked better than placebo, but the science is clear that

antidepressants, don’t actually…..work….

so the clinical utility of this would be zero in treating depression.

Second place was a cognitive behavioral therapy app that well, is a lot like the other gazillion cognitive behavioral therapy apps on the market. And research is clear that up to 85% of the benefit of therapy is the relationship built, so an app can do what….15% of the benefit? So the clinical utility score of this app is maybe 1, and so is the innovation score.

Our team worked really hard and should have had a fair #mentalhealth innovation contest to compete in.

Our team worked really hard and should have had a fair #mentalhealth innovation contest to compete in.

So, why is our product better?

  • P3 is Merging community supports, formal peer supports, and rich, untapped artist networks
    peer support provides a 70% reduction in hospital use
  • peer support increases recovery rates and reduces hospital re-admission
  • our product has already scaled up.
  • lay interventions double recovery rates
  • community wellness interventions beat traditional mental health treatment whenever compared head to head
  • 85% of benefit of therapy is relationships
    Only 15% benefit from phone apps or therapy technique (Scott Miller KU Lawrence)
    455% ROI for ACO’s, Health Homes, HMO’s.

So what happened? Silicon valley glitz and no substance. Ignoring the people you purport to serve. The three patient advocate apps all had way more crowd verification, more engagement, more market traction, etc… So what is the situation here?

Mental Health innovation typically falls into three categories:

1) techie types who makes glizty products who rarely solve actual needs because they have never even heard of patient advocates (let alone the recovery movement).
2) Patient advocate / recovery movement types who really good products that your people ignore.
3) Clinical types who typcially do minor variation on proven themes that aren’t really innovative.

What we have here is Health 2.0 people talking about listening to patients and not actually being able to do it. Standard #mentalhealth innovation by techhies who know nothing about mental health. Picking judges that don’t know a thing about patient advocates or the recovery movement. Getting scalability confused with “the presence of tech.”  Not knowing the real needs of the community you are trying to help. Not actually listening to advocates. Not listening to crowd verification.

So in the end we get…..#mentalhealth innovation products with ….zero clinical utility and zero patient verification. Good job silicon valley. Here’s how to do it better:

Infographic on #mentalhealth innovation:

1) pay advocates 2) teach entrepreneurs about recovery 3) fund startups



Here are some of the comments from our supporters

(note these are real people, unlike the paid accounts the winner was using):

@pkomarek: I support @PoetryforPower for #MDDCare16 The best #trauma program for youth I have ever seen. ow.ly/nS48304Ci8d

@PeerWordworks: I support @PoetryforPower for #MDDCare16 because not enough #mentalhealth #socent #innovation includes US. #health2con @ReginaHolliday

@WellbeingForAll: I support @PoetryforPower for #MDDCare16 because patient advocate organizations need to be heard. #walkinggallery #health2con #mhsm

@SusanRogersMH: I support @PoetryforPower for #MDDCare16 bit.ly/2bTw6HO becuz of the powerful work of former Olympian @CorinnaWest! #mentalhealth

@HakeemFurious: @PoetryforPower seems to be the best option for #MDDCare16 #MorethananApp

Eugenia Hu @IdoAThing: @PoetryforPower is an exciting program for disorder-agnostic recovery that could benefit many people in many communities #MDDcare16
Eugenia Hu @IdoAThing @PoetryforPower love that you don’t need a diagnosis or a prescrip to participate and heal from trauma. You’ll reach a lot of people 🙂

@MightyCasey: Poets IN DA HOUSE at #MDDcare16 pitch session at #health2con- STRONG input fm @PoetryforPower team! pic.twitter.com/tqjYLyxT1E

Neda @NedaAmidi: Wow @PoetryforPower plugging people back into a sense of meaning and purpose! @Mowad_Nassar @TakedaPharma @health2con

Dr Darshana Nadkarni @DarshanaN: #depression #healthcare #innovation @health2con @TakedaPharma @PoetryforPower reduces hospitalization costs & trauma
Dr Darshana Nadkarni @DarshanaN: #depression #healthcare #innovation @health2con @TakedaPharma @PoetryforPower – 85% of therapy is from relationship building

EdLogics @EdLogics: @PoetryforPower perhaps a gamified platform to help educate consumers & direct them toward treatment is the solution edlogics.com

Rachel de Sain @rdesain: @PoetryforPower ps love what you’re doing, teaching and supporting people to “share their truth” is a really powerful thing.
Rachel de Sain @rdesain: @PoetryforPower real life connection can be supported by technology & in fact is a successful part of some oCBT therapy in rural areas.

William Hardrick @wzell81: I support @PoetryforPower for #MDDcare16 because once a personal realizes the power of words, they can change someone’s life!

Ree Cee @ree_cee: I support @PoetyforPower for #MDDcare16 because poetry has the ability to save lives, as it did my own. Their work is so needed.

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