INDEPENDENT NEWS

Help online to tackle depression

Published: Wed 2 Jun 2010 01:04 PM
Help online to tackle depression
An innovative online tool to help New Zealanders manage their depression was launched today by Associate Health Minister Jonathan Coleman.
The Journal is a programme fronted by former All Black John Kirwan who acts as an online personal coach to help people with mild to moderate depression through a six-week programme.
It teaches people techniques they can easily use in everyday life to help their own depression from social and physical activities to eating and sleeping well.
The Journal is user-friendly and allows people to deal with depression in their own time, in the convenience of their own home at no cost.
''Taking the first steps in acknowledging you may have depression and seeking help is often the hardest part,'' Dr Coleman says.
''The Journal is a really great option for people with mild to moderate depression. It helps people to make the first move in managing their illness knowing there's professional help available if needed. It can also be a helpful tool for GPs and mental health professionals to recommend as part of treatment for patients with depression.''
The Journal, which is part of the second phase of the National Depression Initiative, was developed with input from mental health professionals over two years. It is supported by experienced phone counsellors who can provide help when needed, either online or by phone or text.
The service offers both technical help and personal support with getting through the programme. Information on treatment options and local services will also be available. The Journal is located at www.depression.org.nz.
ENDS

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