STORY is a smart phone application that supports users in understanding and recovering from PTSD. It can be used as a self-help aid, or as an integral part of a treatment program—accelerating healing progress, facilitating follow-up and providing data analytics for longitudinal studies.
The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs estimates that PTSD afflicts almost 11% -20% of veterans in a given year. Current treatment programs are costly and do not provide for continuity of care. Treatment histories are fragmented making data-driven analysis of effectiveness impossible.
According to the Navy Surgeon General Vice Adm. Dr. Matthew Nathan, when the invisible wounds of PTSD occur reaching service members in distress as quickly as possible is critical and has been shown to dramatically reduce the rate of emotional health issues. He also cites the stigma of seeking mental health care remains an issue.
Why our solution will solve the problem:
STORY addresses Vice Adm. Nathan’s immediacy and stigma issues—providing an avenue for channeling emotional distress in real time, discreetly and privately. STORY is a guided journaling app integrated with a psychoeducational platform. STORY offers a safe place to record actions and emotions of a traumatic event in real time and to facilitate treatment and recovery by offering guidance to the user and in-the-moment narration to their practitioner on a collaborative online platform that ties it all together.
Our solution's stage of development:
Our target outcomes:
Returning service members face a confluence of obstacles as they reintegrate into their communities and transition into civilian life. STORY addresses the immediacy and stigma surrounding reporting, addressing, and healing from traumatic events and PTSD recovery. It also provides an avenue for channeling emotional distress in real time, discreetly and privately while service members work with their healing team.
We are continuing to strengthen our stakeholder community and will be working through existing veteran service organizations for deployment. As we grow, we will expand to service member’s families as they are also affected by secondary trauma exposure.
How we will measure our progress:
The populations we will benefit initially:
The regions we will benefit initially:
The countries we will benefit initially:
The technologies we employ:
Why our solution is unique:
There exists no other platform that records the trauma story as it is recalled and which can manage and authenticate their experience in real time. It is vital for a trauma survivor to have the ability to reorganize their thoughts and triggers as they arise. Providing this important feature, along with monitoring and evaluation tools for practitioners, and pyscho-education creates the right ecosystem for healing.
Why our solution is human-centered:
Considering the complexities that trauma has on the brain and cognition, simplicity is key to user engagement and overall efficacy of treatment with STORY. We view our users as co-collaborators and depend on their user feedback and social emotional insight check-ins to measure STORY’s effectiveness throughout our programming phases. Because each military population is different, we work in collaboration with existing treatment providers to cater sociolinguistics to their constituents. Our goal is to reach our service members where they are so we are in early development for alternative integration pathways on native platforms like Facebook via Chatbots.
How people will access our solution:
We are currently discussing long term development, and partnership with various ministries of health, academic institutions, and international development organizations for scalability. We see our work operating on a country by country basis to ensure quality and psychological cultural relevancy.
Technology-Readiness Level:1-3 (Formulation)
Where we are located:United States
How we will sustain our team financially:
We have been self-financed by small donors through our initial case study on www.illgofirst.com where we measured self-disclosure, self-identification, and self-help seeking behaviors for a broad audience. Now we are primarily focused on a population group which have already been diagnosed with PTSD as our initial pilot group. Eventually we would like to expand other trauma populations.
We are currently raising a friends and family round for development through deployment. We will then implement a practitioner subscriber and/or B2B commissioned projects program.
The factors limiting our success:
We are looking for the right technical and financial partners to bring STORY to life and into consumer's hands. We would also like to increase our university partnerships, both for expert advisors, and for STORY's use in PTSD studies.
How long we have been working on our solution:2 years
How long it will take to develop a pilot:1-3 months
How long it will take to scale beyond our pilot:12-18 months
Our expected annual budget:
How much of our budget we've secured to date:
Our promotional materials:
We're looking for partners in these fields:
Why we're applying to Solve:
We know that it will take a group of innovative thinkers, and a quality audaciousness hope to help us solve the world's most pressing issues. Tackling mental health care accessibility is just one of the many we are looking to address, but even there, it cannot be understated the importance of multi-collateral collaboration. Learning for the wide areas of expertise MIT and those who are a part of MIT Solve will help STORY come to life, and will help those we wish to help the most. Yes, with some innovation and commitment, healing is possible for anyone, anywhere.
Our current partners:
We are working with the Yale Center for Social Emotional Learning, and are finalizing partnerships with veteran groups for pilot users.
- Jessica Minhas Founder & CEO, I'll Go First, I'll Go First