Remote measurement technologies for depression

Remote measurement technologies for depression in young people: a realist review with meaningful lived experience involvement and recommendations for future research and practice

What does and doesn’t work when it comes to the use of remote measurement technologies as an intervention for depression in young people? The research team conducted a review of the field to determine what does and doesn’t work, for whom, in which contexts, and how and why, in order to make important recommendations for future research and practice in the digital revolution. Iterative searches across ten electronic databases and six sources of grey literature produced a total of 6,114 records. 100 of these records were included in the evidence synthesis. As part of the Wellcome Trust Active Ingredients Commission 2021, a realist review was conducted in collaboration with two lived experience co-researchers and with input from the McPin Foundation Young People’s Advisory Group.

Supporting lived experience researchers

Members of the McPin Foundation Young People’s Advisory Group (YPAG) were involved before the start of the project. They made significant contributions to the development of a successful proposal for the commission, including defining depression, identifying sources of literature, the type and scope of review, and the lived experience involvement strategy itself. Following training on realist review processes, the co-researchers contributed their own intervention theories for inclusion into the initial framework. They also helped to develop the iterative search strategy, conducted literature screening and data extraction, and led the Q&A session with the wider YPAG. The co-researchers then led the subsequent team meeting to discuss YPAG feedback, final evidence synthesis and development of recommendations.


There are so many different approaches to take in mental health research. For more about why #MHRmatters and how you can get involved, join the conversation #mentalhealthresearchmatters

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