Highlights from the Mental Health Innovation Zone

See what others are doing in mental health innovation.

In the News

APA 'Shark Tank' Takes a Deep Dive Into Mental Health Care Solutions


For the second consecutive year, the Innovation Lab, a novel initiative that takes a "shark tank" approach to finding creative solutions to mental health care problems, will be a key feature of the American Psychiatric Association (APA) 2018 annual meeting.

"We are going to be taking a deeper dive and build on the success of last year," Tristan Gorrindo, MD, a child and adolescent psychiatrist, deputy medical director, and director of education at the APA, More

Tech and Psychiatry: An Odd Couple, An Impending Marriage

Huffington Post

“This is the future,” said Saul Levin, CEO of the American Psychiatric Association, as he cut the ribbon of the Innovation Zone at the APA convention in San Diego this week. Indeed, the use of technology in psychiatry is exploding at a rapid pace. This year’s largest gathering of psychiatrists in the US featured talks on smartphone apps, virtual reality, Google glass, the potential of meeting psychiatric needs in China, and the promise of tech to change psychiatry. More

Future Is Here: Be Part of Psychiatry’s Technological Revolution

Psychiatric News

To embrace the growing and fast-moving role that technology is playing in mental health care, APA will debut the Mental Health Innovation Zone in the Exhibit Hall at the 2017 Annual Meeting.

The Innovation Zone aims to create an interactive and dynamic “meeting within a meeting,” where attendees can drop in to learn about advances in mental health technology and network with rising entrepreneurs and proven leaders in this growing technology sector, said Nina Taylor, APA’s deputy director of education. More

  • 2018

    2018 Annual Meeting

    May 5-9, 2018 | New York City, N.Y.

  • 2017

    2017 Annual Meeting

    May 20-24, 2017 | San Diego, Calif.


    Grand Prize Winner: Jeff Clark with Online CBT Insomnia Program

    Jeff Clark is a resident at the University of Washington School of Medicine. He took home the Grand Prize Award for best overall venture at the Psychiatry Innovation Lab for his project called Slumber Camp, an online CBTI program. Stay tuned for his pitch and a candid interview to learn more. And be sure to check out Techforpsych on Youtube for interviews of other finalists and Psychiatry Innovation Lab leaders.

    Dr. Irfan with Hope Assist, a Mental Health App for Pakistan

    Dr. Muhammad Irfan MBBS, MCPS (Psychiatry), FCPS (Psychiatry), MS (Mental Health Policy & Services), PhD wants to train primary care physicians to deliver high quality mental healthcare in Pakistan. He wants to design an app called Hope Assist that would deliver information from WHO Mental Health Guidelines to drastically improve mental healthcare in Pakistan.

    Team Safe Hear – Preventing Domestic Violence

    Team Safe Hear wants a solution to domestic violence. They propose using a hands free smart phone application that detects domestic violence through sound, followed by an alert and intervention.

    Microsoft Kinect Mental Status Exam – Calvin Yang, M.D., Ph.D.

    Dr. Calvin Yang wants to use the Microsoft Kinect to do mental status examinations during clinical visits. He feels that this will reduce charting time and improve examination metrics. Dr. Yang was awarded $20,000 in Google cloud credits for his initiative which won the Psychiatry Innovation Lab Technology award, sponsored by Google.

    Dr. Avi Peled Interview on Computational Psychiatry

    Dr. Avi Peled wants to rewrite the textbooks of Mental Healthcare. He has been studying computational neuroscience and computational psychiatry for over a decade and feels that the time for changing the way we diagnose and treat mental illness is near. Basically mental illness arises from dysfunction of the brain, and not symptoms. This is the basis of where we are headed in using brain scans, genetics and other objective tools to be much more effective in helping those with mental health disorders.

    John Snook, Queueing Theory and the Treatment Advocacy Center

    John Snook is the executive director of the Treatment Advocacy Center, a widely recognized influential mental health advocacy organization. John and his team are using Queueing theory to reduce wait times for mental health patients in jail that need a hospital bed to receive treatment and be restored to competency for trial.

    Dr. Eraka Bath with Juvenile Justice App

    Dr. Eraka Bath comes to us from UCLA and is making a case for an app designed for Juvenile Justice Youth. Recidivism (reoffenses) are common because youth have a difficult time making all meetings and necessary requirements to come off probation. Dr. Bath wants to design an app that will help them navigate the landscape of the juvenile justice system.

  • 2016

    2016 IPS: The Mental Health Services Conference

    October 7, 2016 | Washington, D.C.

    Grand Prize Winner: Dr. Joseph Insler (Overdose Recovery Bracelet)

    Watch a discussion with Dr. Joseph Insler, an addiction psychiatrist from Boston who is developing a wearable capable of delivering life-saving medicine to a patient in the event of a drug overdose. Dr. Insler went on to win the grand prize in the Psychiatry Innovation Lab.

    Impact Award – Michelle Koh, Priscilla Siow, Akanksha Jain (Alzhelp)

    Watch a discussion with Alzhelp (Akanksha, Michelle, and Priscilla) who met through a clinical neuroscience internship program at Stanford.They are designing an app for Alzheimer's patients to assist with navigation resources and caretaker safety. Alzhelp went on to win the Impact prize in the Psychiatry Innovation Lab.

    Finalist – Ellen Oh (We Embrace)

    Watch a discussion with Ellen Oh, a designer from New York City who is developing an app called 'We Embrace' for foreign speaking pscyhiatry patients to improve communication with their physician. She has lots of interesting insights towards product design, development and entrepreneurship .

    Finalist – Kammarauche Isuzu and Mackenzie Drazan (MiHelper)

    Dr. Kammarauche Asuzu and Mackenzie Drazan from Duke want to use Machine Learning to reduce emergency room visits of mental health patients.

    PTSD Nightmare Prevention Wearable with Tyler Skluzacek and Cody Rall

    Tyler Skluzacek made a big splash in 2015 when the news media caught wind of his PTSD wearable in development to prevent traumatic nightmares. Tyler and Cody Rall share the story of where they met at a hackathon in DC to brainstorm for the PTSD wearable and where Tyler took it from there.

    2016 Annual Meeting – Inaugural Innovation Lab

    May 15, 2016 | Atlanta

    Grand Prize Winner & Audience Choice Award: Jim Schwoebel (Neurolex Diagnostics)

    Watch a discussion with Jim Schwoebel who is developing technology that can assist health care workers to make various diagnoses. Jim won the 2016 psychiatry innovation lab for his ideas and plans to put the cash prize back into the company to further advance his cause.

Videos courtesy of Cody Rall, M.D. with Techforpsych

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If you have questions about the Psychiatry Innovation Lab, please contact us via email at innovation@psych.org.

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