Digital Mental Health Initiatives in Nigeria - A Quantitative Interview Study
The direct and indirect impact of the pandemic and its mitigation measures have exacerbated the global mental health crisis. Digital mental health interventions (DMHIs) may have the potential to address health system gaps and global health inequalities in low-and middle-income countries (LMICs). This thesis aims to map the current state of DMHIs available in Nigeria and illustrate their progress, limitations, and challenges. Twenty semi-structured interviews were conducted with mental health researchers, healthcare providers, and digital health experts. Data was analyzed using Dedoose via thematic analysis. Advantages of DMHIs include increasing efficiency, accessibility, addressing stigma, and filling the mental health service gap. Disadvantages include skepticism in DMHIs, limitations of applicability, lack of accessibility to internet and technology, lack of sustainability, and lack of infrastructure, funding, and policies. The lessons learned in the Nigerian context can inform the delivery of DMHIs in other low-resource settings. Future research should examine feedback from users and providers of DMHIs to allow for comparative analysis, more conclusive and replicable results to inform DMHI design and implementation.