A NEW mobile app will support people in Craven with their mental health and well-being.

The ‘comparison service’ is being unveiled by clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) that serve Craven and the Bradford district.

Mental health issues will affect around 155,000 people in the Craven and Bradford district during their lifetime, with approximately 6,200 people needing specialist mental health support.

The latest initiative supports mental wellbeing, building it into care delivery, supporting early intervention and helping people to self-care and manage their conditions.

The intention is that this will create a new way to support self-care that does not replace traditional ways of accessing mental health services.

To help people find safe apps that will be effective for their health condition, the CCGs have worked with ORCHA to build a free health app comparison site, using the web address bradfordandcraven.orcha.co.uk.

ORCHA tests and reviews thousands of apps so that patients and professionals can make an informed decision about which ones they should download.

The ORCHA app comparison site is not limited to mental health. People can search for other health and care apps for help stopping smoking, managing diabetes, encouraging walking, and tracking alcohol and drug use.

GPs and other healthcare professionals across the region are being given ORCHA Pro accounts, enabling them to recommend the best apps to support individual patients by sending them a text message.

Local GP Dr Taz Aldawoud said: “Orcha provides me with the confidence to recommend apps to my patients, specific to their needs, knowing it has been through a rigorous assurance process for data/cyber security, clinical effectiveness and taken account of user experience.

“Being able to recommend an app that can help manage a condition, offer guidance about their lifestyle or provide a tool to improve their self-care is a new and invaluable way of providing that support.”

Jane Patrickson, a local practice nurse, said that often people only needed simple, practical help.

She said: “This app comparison site is easy to use for both patients and health professionals. Phones are a big part of people’s lives and, being able to get advice and practical support as part of their daily routine, can only help to improve their mental and physical wellbeing.”