In this issue of the Journal, Carras and colleagues describe the growing use of mobile phones, email, the Internet, and other forms of telecommunication in a community psychiatry clinic. They conclude that the feasibility and impact of technology-based interventions are persuasive and offer new avenues to provide health information and treatment.
Also in this issue of the Journal, Ahuja and colleagues present a case of a young man who posted content on Facebook that suggested suicidal risk, leading to swift and probably life-saving intervention. In their discussion, Draper and Womble suggest that social media, “when used effectively, can be a powerful tool in saving the lives of people who are considering suicide.” They describe a number of Facebook strategies that “harness the power of chat as an intervention tool”—a set of laudable and responsible services that will surely be emulated by other social media systems.
John Oldham, MD