Improving Access to Mental Health with Tech

By / 6 months ago / Experts Views / 36 Comments
Improving Access to Mental Health with Tech

Web-based app Ooca enables those suffering from mental health in Thailand to seek professional help conveniently and privately, and is poised to expand its network to other parts of Asia very soon.

Mental health facilities are not highly accessible in many Asian countries. In 2014, the proportion of psychiatrists to the Thai population was 0.87 per 100,000 while in the Philippines it is 0.49 per 100,000 . In India, the proportion of psychiatrists to the population is 0.75 per 100,000 in 2019. These figures are very far from the ideal proportion of six psychiatrists per 100,000 population in high-income countries .

Kanpassorn Suriyasangpetch portrait

In most countries in Asia, the majority of mental health professionals are concentrated in the major cities, making access to professional help for those living in the rural areas difficult. Additionally, mental health remains a major taboo in these countries, which discourages people who are coping with mental health issues from seeking the help they need.

For dentist and tech entrepreneur, Kanpassorn Suriyasangpetch or Khun Eix as she is better known, these were the main motivations for her to create Ooca – a web-based app designed to help those suffering from mental illness gain access to a wide network of psychiatrists and psychologists conveniently and privately.

Kanpassorn herself has been suffering from mild depression since she was a child, and found that with the help of a psychiatrist and regular counselling she has been able to understand and manage her condition better.

However, while working as a military dentist for the Thai royal army, she faced challenges in accessing professional help. She was based in a remote town six hours away from Bangkok, where there were only two psychiatrists who have a long list of patients waiting to see them. The alternative was to travel to Bangkok to see a psychiatrist, which meant she would have to take a couple of days off from work. She did not want her colleagues to know that she was seeing a psychiatrist fearing that it would hurt her career.

It was during one of her long commutes to Bangkok that the idea for Ooca was conceived. Launched in 2018, Ooca is the first app of its kind in Southeast Asia featuring the largest available network of psychiatrists and psychologists in Thailand, with over 60 professionals on board at present.

“Ooca helps users connect with a psychiatrist or psychologist no matter where they are located. As all sessions are anonymous, the patient does not need to suffer the stigma associated with mental health. Users can seek out specific professionals to help with their issues or use the Topic Matching function to find the most suitable person to speak to about their condition,” said Kanpassorn.

Ooca currently focuses on providing counselling to patients via video calls only, charging a fee of THB 1,500 (about US$49) for a 30-minute session. However, in line with ethical industry practices and in the interests of the user and the mental health professional, the app does not provide any diagnosis. For more serious cases, users are typically referred for a follow-up face-to-face consultation with the mental health practitioner.

When packaged as an employee benefit, the app assists companies with improving mental health in their organisations. One of Ooca’s key features is the ability to provide back-end analytics, and this data gives companies insight into the mental health status of their employees without providing specifics on user information or compromising on the anonymity of its users.

Since its launch, the app has garnered 52,000 individual users in Thailand as well as 20,000 registered companies including Thai and international enterprises. According to Kanpassorn, more than half of its users are women aged 25 to 35, with the youngest user being 14 years old.

As part of its social outreach project to reach out to more young people, Ooca will be signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Department of Mental Health (Thailand), making the app accessible to underprivileged youths in universities across the country for free.

“Today the younger generation is more open about mental health issues, but the older generation, particularly the Baby Boomers or older Gen-Xers, still don’t believe in the effectiveness of counselling or seeing a psychologist or therapist. Many would rather visit the temple than consult a psychiatrist,”
shared Kanpassorn, who is one of the speakers for the Start-up Podium at the 9th edition of Medical Fair Thailand 2019 (MFT 2019) in Bangkok this September. The founder of Ooca will be speaking on the difference between healthcare and life sciences and other high-tech start-ups.

“We need all institutions — government and private, and large corporations — to be more aware of mental health, help increase awareness of the impact of mental health on the public and bridge the gap between those who need help and mental health professionals. We have encountered many incidents where the human resources department (of a company) is keen to use the app but senior management doesn’t give the ‘green light’. Awareness must start from the top,” she adds.

Kanpassorn sees Ooca as a solution to bridge existing gaps in mental health services across Asia, and plans to establish the app in Singapore and Hong Kong in the near future, followed by other parts of the region.

Zya-ul Haque

Zya-ul Haque

The author didn't add any Information to his profile yet.


  • SEO SERVICES22. Jan, 2020

    Im grateful for the article.Really thank you! Keep writing.

  • Leonardvoice21. Jan, 2020

    Really educational, looking forward to visiting again.


  • Waynedaf21. Jan, 2020

    Cialis cialis coupon generic cialis without prescription

  • Matbroomb19. Jan, 2020

    Viagra Generico Farmacia Levitra Precios [url=]Buy Cialis[/url] Cialis Levitra Differenze

  • LesDueply18. Jan, 2020

    A Partir De Amoxil Compro Viagra Poco Prezzo Mexico Costo Finasteride Propecia [url=]Buy Cialis[/url] Comprare Torri Kamagra

  • Waynedaf18. Jan, 2020

    Cialis cost of cialis cialis samples request

  • sling tv16. Jan, 2020

    Great delivery. Solid arguments. Keep up the great spirit.

  • LesDueply15. Jan, 2020

    Acheter Du Xenical Moins Cher Cialis 5 Mg Price Walmart [url=]Cialis[/url] Viagra 100 Mg Forum Motilium Otc

  • Peterwal13. Jan, 2020

    Hello, show one’s gratitude you looking representing facts! buy cialis
    generic viagra prices

  • EverettJag10. Jan, 2020

    Hello, thank you looking for tidings! viagra in action I repost in Facebook.
    generic viagra without subscription walmart

  • sling tv07. Jan, 2020

    Amazing! Its truly amazing article, I have got much clear idea on the topic of from this post.

  • sling tv05. Jan, 2020

    Keep this going please, great job!

  • expired cialis 3 years04. Jan, 2020

    Hello, thank you looking for facts! I repost in Facebook

  • sling tv03. Jan, 2020

    Wonderful goods from you, man. I’ve understand your stuff previous to and
    you’re just extremely excellent. I really like what you’ve acquired here,
    really like what you’re saying and the way in which you say it.
    You make it entertaining and you still care for
    to keep it wise. I can not wait to read far more from you.
    This is really a terrific web site.

  • Dec, 2019

    Hi! This is my 1st comment here so I just wanted to give a
    quick shout out and say I really enjoy reading your blog posts.

    Can you recommend any other blogs/websites/forums that go
    over the same subjects? Appreciate it!

  • side effects of viagra29. Dec, 2019

    canadian pharmacy world coupons

  • viagra samples27. Dec, 2019

    Hello, blame you as a replacement for good blog! What substance in your blog?

  • Robertreoge24. Dec, 2019

    cialis 20 image
    tadalafil canadian pharmacy

  • DavidJat20. Dec, 2019

    viagra single packs
    viagra coupons
    female viagra

  • generic viagra available in usa20. Dec, 2019

    Hello, blame you in behalf of good content

  • 100 mg viagra lowest price17. Dec, 2019

    Hello, in consequence of you in behalf of good contentment

  • Mathewwam17. Dec, 2019

    viagra canada trial samples of viagra generic viagra prices
    canada viagra

  • online cialis12. Dec, 2019

    Hello, tender thanks you for good plat and nice blog.

  • Stephenbiany11. Dec, 2019

  • quest bars cheap10. Dec, 2019

    My developer is trying to convince me to move to
    .net from PHP. I have always disliked the idea because of the expenses.
    But he’s tryiong none the less. I’ve been using Movable-type on several websites for about a
    year and am worried about switching to another platform.
    I have heard fantastic things about Is there
    a way I can import all my wordpress posts into it? Any help would
    be greatly appreciated!

  • gina valentina brother viagra him09. Dec, 2019

    Hello, thank you for blog walmart pharmacy online

  • quest bars cheap09. Dec, 2019

    Hey there! I realize this is somewhat off-topic
    however I had to ask. Does operating a well-established website such as yours require a
    large amount of work? I am completely new to running a blog but I do write in my journal on a daily basis.

    I’d like to start a blog so I can share my personal
    experience and thoughts online. Please let me
    know if you have any kind of suggestions or tips for brand
    new aspiring bloggers. Thankyou!

  • Albertniple08. Dec, 2019

    viagra obsolete new safer treatment i took expired viagra precription drugs from canada

  • ps4 games06. Dec, 2019

    I am sure this piece of writing has touched all the internet viewers, its really really
    good article on building up new weblog.

  • quest bars cheap coupon twitter02. Dec, 2019

    Hello there I am so excited I found your blog page, I really found you by
    error, while I was researching on Yahoo for something else, Nonetheless I
    am here now and would just like to say many thanks for a marvelous post and
    a all round entertaining blog (I also love the theme/design), I don’t have time to read it all at the moment but I have
    bookmarked it and also added in your RSS feeds, so when I have time I will be back to
    read more, Please do keep up the great work.

  • plenty of fish dating site26. Nov, 2019

    constantly i used to read smaller articles which also clear their motive,
    and that is also happening with this paragraph which I am reading

  • why coconut oil25. Nov, 2019

    What’s up to every body, it’s my first pay a quick visit of this weblog;
    this website carries remarkable and genuinely fine data in support of readers.

  • tinyurl.com24. Nov, 2019

    Howdy just wanted to give you a quick heads up.
    The text in your content seem to be running off the screen in Safari.
    I’m not sure if this is a format issue or something to do with internet browser compatibility but I figured I’d post to let you know.
    The design and style look great though! Hope you get the problem solved soon. Thanks

  • tinyurl.com23. Nov, 2019

    Wow, this piece of writing is pleasant, my younger sister is analyzing these kinds of things,
    therefore I am going to let know her.

  • spanishwomenxoi14. Oct, 2019

    CBC lifetime

    . printed: interest rate 19, 2017 1:07 PM ET Last modified: April 20, 2017

    (credit card: IStock/Getty illustrations or photos)think that you swiping right, And strait into oblivion?

    If you not having luck matching with college students partners, you might need to freshen up on your online dating etiquette.

    We talked to 6 matchmaking and relationship experts to obtain their best, most straightforward tips for improving your game.

    On just saying “hiya”

    “Allow for three messages between the two before transitioning from the dating app to text. man, Give the woman your number rather than asking for hers in a lot of cases women are a bit more hesitant giving out their personal details, Shannon Tebb, Shanny In this town

    “If she tremendously hot, She used to physical kind comments. Pick something she actually wrote about on her profile to go with her on, ould – Jorgensen, Wingmam

    “When buying an intro message, It has to be upwards of “hey,hi everyone” because,since “heya, customize it. Read their profile and pick up on a pastime of theirs and ask a question about it, Terran Shea, mutual Match

    “A man with a plan is sexy. Ask if she is free on specific days and have a place and a time, Shannon Tebb, Shanny In town

    On shopping for winning photos

    “You should have at least three photos, But five use. choose one close up, One full body and three with you using activity that you enjoy, Deanna Cobden, Dateworks

    “Don choose photos where you wearing sun shades. It gives the appearance you hiding something, jules Spira, Cyber Dating professionals

    “Have a friend a member of a man or woman, far better! take a look at pictures and have them help you select the best ones. People see you various way than you see yourself, Terran Shea, mutual Match

    “Include results of you smiling, Showcasing your temperament. This isn Instagram you can rule out the duck [url=]spanish beauty[/url] selfies, Shannon Tebb, Shanny In this town

    “Avoid posting pictures of you with them or someone else children. They don belong on online dating services. It is amazing to me how common this is, Terran Shea, communal Match.

  • Stevavette12. Oct, 2019

    Viagra Cialis Effetti Acquisto Cialis Generico In Contrassegno [url=]п»їcialis[/url] Viagra Meltabs 20 Mg Cialis Dosage

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked. *