How much are patients actually using mental health apps? Research on engagement is elusive

As companies selling health care apps struggle to prove to a skeptical system that they really deliver results, we’re about to start hearing a lot more about “engagement.”

A new paper scrutinizing six clinical trials supporting four mental health apps cleared by the Food and Drug Administration argues there’s an urgent need to close the “gap between intention and real-world efficacy for digital therapeutics” — specifically, the dearth of data on how much people actually use digital treatments.

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