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Swinburne’s Data Analytics Tool Reshapes Mental Health Services

Image Credits: Swinburne University, Press Release
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Swinburne University of Technology is a lead technology partner in a collaborative endeavour that has achieved a significant milestone in mental health service planning in the Australian Capital Territory (ACT). The project team has successfully developed a prototype of a business intelligence tool named MChart, which aims to revolutionise decision-making within intricate health systems by providing essential information to health planners.

Image Credits: Swinburne University, Press Release

Associate Professor Amir Aryani, Head of Swinburne’s Social Data Analytics Lab, heralds the tool as a potential game-changer in mental health service distribution. He noted that the tool is an advancement in evidence-informed planning for mental health services. By using the capabilities of data analytics and geospatial mapping, the team is enabling health planners and managers to make informed decisions that will ultimately improve patient access, experience, and outcomes.

The platform serves a pivotal role in augmenting decision-making and fostering collaboration among stakeholders. Tailored to offer crucial insights into mental health service provision, the tool furnishes valuable information concerning services, costs, and effectiveness.

Equipped with a user-friendly interface, it allows health planners to explore various scenarios and visualise the potential impacts of different service interventions. For instance, a health planner in Canberra could utilise MChart to pinpoint areas with elevated rates of loneliness and evaluate the availability of relevant mental health services.

Furthermore, the platform facilitates benchmarking and performance tracking by providing the requisite information for assessing the effectiveness of services relative to industry standards. Its comprehensive data analytics capabilities empower stakeholders to navigate the intricacies of the mental health system, pinpoint areas for improvement, and allocate resources more efficiently.

Associate Professor Aryani underscores the collaborative nature of the project, emphasising the shared vision among partners to drive innovation in mental health service planning. He noted that the project exemplifies the power of collaboration between academia, industry, and government. Together, the team is harnessing cutting-edge technology to address critical challenges in mental health care delivery.

Conducted through Australia’s Digital Health Cooperative Research Centre, the project boasts a roster of esteemed partners, including the University of Canberra, Capital Health Network, the ACT Office of Mental Health and Wellbeing, Bupa, and Psicost. Associate Professor José Alberto Salinas-Pérez, spokesperson for Psicost, expresses pride in joining the collaboration. The platform is a cutting-edge project internationally, he said, and the team is delighted to contribute to this exciting initiative, which will undoubtedly enhance mental health planning in Australia.

Dr. Elizabeth Moore, Coordinator-General of the ACT Government’s Office of Mental Health and Wellbeing, asserts that the project strongly aligns with her office’s strategic plan, goals, and priority areas. She noted that the platform is pertinent to understanding mental healthcare provision and facilitating better navigation of the care system in our region.

Looking ahead, the platform holds promise for continual monitoring and enhancement of local mental health systems. With ongoing development, data updates, and enhancements, the tool stands poised to play an integral role in continuously improving mental health service provision.

The Social Data Analytics (SoDA) Lab facilitates the integration of data, data science, and an empowered community sector in the evolving Society 4.0. It employs modern cooperative data analytics methods to offer an understanding of health and societal issues.


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