Are we leveraging digital technology in addiction treatment?

June 7, 2016

David H. Gustafson
Director, NIATx and The Center for Health Enhancement Systems Studies

The Center for Health Enhancement at the University of Wisconsin-Madison developed A-CHESS, a smartphone app for recovery support, based in part on ideas that emerged from experts in diverse fields and people suffering from addiction or affected by it. In 2009, in a Behavioral Healthcare article, I talked about key ingredients that a technology-based addiction treatment systems such as A-CHESS would need.

A lot of the identified, necessary ingredients weren't yet available when we first started thinking about a mobile app to assist those in recovery.

But mobile health has changed so fast that what was visionary a few years ago is considered outdated today. And new features have emerged that we couldn't have imagined then.

Today, A-CHESS continues to evolve as a smartphone app for recovery that provides nearly constant access to peer support, information, activities, counseling, and other services. It has been proven to reduce risky drinking and improve abstinence.

In any case, here's an update of how close we are to our original vision, on a scale of 1 to 5, with 1 meaning we still have a long way to go, and 5 meaning, we're there--but don't unbuckle your seatbelt just yet.

Read the complete article, published originally on May 12, 2016, in Behavioral Healthcare.

Read more about technology trends: The Art and Science of Using Technologies to Intervene, Treat, and Support Individuals with Substance Use Disorders, feature article in the June 2016 ATTC Messenger, by Traci Rieckmann, PhD, Northwest ATTC, and Nancy Roget, MS,  and Joyce Hartje, PhD, of the National Frontier and Rural ATTC.

And don't miss: 

Coming up August 3-5 in Philadelphia:
National Frontier and Rural ATTC's 4th Annual Technology Summit

Registration now open!

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