Using face and voice recognition in depression treatment

This is an interesting news report about using technology to identify certain types of depression. One type of depression, called melancholic depression, is often characterised by subjective things like a lack of pleasure or a lack of reactivity to pleasant things, but can also be identified by objective symptoms such as slowing down of speech or other movements and lack of facial reactivity to emotional stimuli.

http://www.theage.com.au/technology/sci-tech/facing-up-to-depression-over-the-phone-20130226-2f4b6.html

Researchers have developed face and voice recognition technology to monitor this type of thing and help patients’ healthcare professionals identify what type of depression they are likely to have. This is important, because different types of depression often respond to treatments (such as drug treatments) in different ways.

Although I am wary of this type of technology being used by GPs to completely replace psychologists and psychiatrists, I can also see how it might assist mental health professionals. What do you guys think?

 

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