Hong Kong, 22 February 2018 – FWD Hong Kong today announced two collaborations with non-profit organisations to develop digital tools to support those suffering from mental illness in Hong Kong. FWD will partner with The Hong Kong Society of Psychiatrists to develop a free-of-charge professionally endorsed Mental Health Self-assessment Online Tool. Additionally, FWD will support The Child Development Centre to build a Digital Interactive Platform for Children’s Learning Progress. These initiatives aim to increase public awareness of mental health and enhance the learning progress of children with specific needs both at school and at home.
Paul Tse, Chief Marketing Officer of FWD Hong Kong and Macau, said, “According to the Hong Kong Mental Morbidity Survey conducted by the Food and Health Bureau, around one out of seven people aged 16 – 75 suffered from anxiety disorders, depressive disorders or other mental disorders. In 2015 – 2016, demand for the Hospital Authority (HA)’s psychiatric services increased by 21%, compared to that in 2011 – 2012; and the caseload of HA’s child and adolescent psychiatric teams rose by more than 50%, from 18,900 to 28,800 cases, during the same five-year period. More than half of these young patients suffered from autism, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and hyperactivity. This shows that the mental health of both adults and children deserves public attention.”
Paul added, “As digital health is the key for future development of medical services, FWD Hong Kong is funding The Hong Kong Society of Psychiatrists and The Child Development Centre to respectively develop two online tools by combining digital technology and their expertise: a professionally endorsed Mental Health Self-assessment Online Tool and a Digital Platform for Children’s Individual Learning Progress. Our hope is to contribute to society beyond our products and services by fully leveraging technology to help those suffering from mental disorders in Hong Kong.”
Enhancing Public Awareness of Mental Disorders
Dr. Lam Chi Leung, Chairman of The Hong Kong Society of Psychiatrists, said, “According to research from The Chinese University of Hong Kong, it’s estimated that around one million people in Hong Kong suffer from mental illnesses. However, due to insufficient understanding, discrimination by society and a sense of shame, many hidden patients in Hong Kong have not sought medical help or received treatments. The situation is worrying. Although there are various self-assessment tools available to the public in both online and offline, most of them are not endorsed by professionals. By creating the Mental Health Self-Assessment Online Tool together with FWD, and making it available free of charge, we can help promote public awareness of mental health.”
Endorsed by the original author and The Hong Kong Society of Psychiatrists, the Mental Health Self-Assessment Online Tool powered by FWD includes 23 simple questions that the public can answer online. The system provides an assessment based on three pre-set levels and displays the corresponding recommendations. This provides a preliminary understanding of an individual’s mental health, from which users can determine the need to seek professional treatment. The online tool is now available for use at http://www.hksp-mentalscreening.com/en/
Hong Kong’s First Digital Interactive Platform for Children’s Learning Progress
FWD Hong Kong also pledged to donate HK$200,000 to The Child Development Centre for the development of Hong Kong’s first-ever Digital Interactive Platform for Children’s Learning Progress. The tool aims to enhance the learning progress of children with individual needs both at school and at home.
Virginia Wilson, Chief Executive of The Child Development Centre, said, “Time is the most critical challenge in our treatment of children with individual needs. Our professional team is always in a race with time to seize the golden window for appropriate treatment and training. Since the amount of time children spend at our centres are limited, home training takes on critical importance. We are very grateful to FWD for the generous donation to The Child Development Centre, helping turn this long-conceived idea of a digital platform into reality. With this platform, our team can fully understand the children’s progress at home, and the parents can be more engaged with home training.”
The Digital Interactive Platform for Children’s Learning Progress is scheduled to be tested at the end of 2018 and launched early next year. It is expected to benefit more than 350 children per year.