It's a wrap ! The first day of the Scottish hackathon is now finished

Elgin, Scotland

22 June 2022 - 22 June 2022

IT4Anxiety’s 5th and final hackathon was launched on the 22nd of June in Elgin, Scotland and will last for two days. This last IT4Anxiety hackathon is organised by the NHS Western Isles with the support of The Lens.

Participants to this hackathon include various stakeholders from the mental health sector such as start-ups, professionals, researchers, patients, etc.

Notably, 6 start-ups have taken this occasion to meet these stakeholders and to gather feedback to further develop their solutions:

  • Woodlands in my room with Janice McGhie, Kathy Wiles and Rachel McLauchlan

They are creating a virtual reality experience to essentially bring the outdoor experience to people living with dementia. They are seeking to utilise the benefits of nature and positive mental wellbeing in a virtual environment. This concept of a nature based virtual reality has shown to have positive effects in reducing anxiety and improving mood states for people living with dementia.

  • Kindspace with Caroline Laurenson and Phoebe Pearson

Kindspace is a holistic wellbeing voice application for Amazon Alexa, designed to track and improve wellbeing. It raises awareness of key wellbeing indicators, encourages the formation of new habits and signposts to other areas of support. Kindspace empowers people to better manage their self-care and helps to alleviate issues such as stress, anxiety and loneliness.

  • Well@Caring with Alan White, Dr Silja Voolma and Jay Evans

Well@Caring is a super-app. It uses evidence-based machine learning algorithms to empower behavioural change to support care home workers and informal carers who are experiencing burnout and other mental health challenges as a result of COVID-19.

  • Kawan with Ezra Kitson, Zita Takacs and Lisa Iwanaga

Kawan is a virtual pet designed to help people who are suffering from anxiety. On the contrary of other virtual pets, the Kawan pet asks the owner to look after themselves and can help when they are suffering from episodes of anxiety.

  • Cerina with Ozlem Eylem-van Bergeijk PhD

Cerina is a medical-grade digital therapist providing disorder-specific psychological support. Our current application focuses on treating Generalised Anxiety Disorder (GAD). It consists of six weeks long therapy sessions with the intention of helping the user to understand their condition, the treatment approach, and how it is applicable to them. The long-term vision is to develop a digital therapist that can be scaled up to treat other mental health problems, can be used in multiple languages, and is culturally appropriate to each end-user.

  • The VR Hive: A virtual space designed to help reduce anxiety with Anne Widdop and Kerri Thornton

This cutting-edge mindfulness and meditation platform is set to transform the way people deal with mental health. This effective mindfulness space is engaging and easy to practise. By gamifying meditation, the VR hive makes mindfulness and meditation fun and engaging, whist it helps users to focus and relax.

The day started with some welcome words given by Jenny Coxon and Susan Perry, Head of Public Health at NHS Wakefield. This introduction was followed by a keynote speech provided by Chris Wright, National Advisory for Digital Mental Health at the Scottish Government. It was then the time to build teams around the different start-ups and to start working on their solutions. The rest of the day was dedicated to this work in the framework of 3 workshops with experts’ advice and support on Sustainability, Value and securing Investment. The workshops were interrupted for the lunch break followed by a keynote speech on Huan Rights Principles in digital health and social care provided by Chris Mackie, Digital Assistant Director at the health and social care alliance Scotland (the ALLIANCE).

See you tomorrow for the second day of this amazing hackathon! We are looking forward to discovering the winners of the hackathon!

Stay tuned on the IT4Anxiety social media (@IT4Anxiety) for some hot news throughout the day !

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