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Virtual Hope Box is a multi-media coping skill app designed for individuals struggling with depression (particularly military service members). The four main features of Virtual Hope Box include sections for distraction, inspiration, relaxation, and coping skill options. The distraction techniques include games that require focus, like Sudoku and word puzzles. The relaxation techniques offer a variety of guided and self-controlled meditation exercises. The coping techniques offer suggestions for activities that reduce stress. The inspiration section offers brief quotes to improve mood and motivation. The app can be used in collaboration with a mental health provider through the “coping cards” feature, which can be programmed to address specific problem areas. The relaxation tools can also be used with a clinical professional or other meditation partner, if desired.

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Credibility

Overall Score: 3.92/5.00

Overall Score: 11/14

Research Base: 3/3
Research Funding: 2/2
Proposed Intervention: 3/3
Consumer Ratings: 2/3
Clinical Input in Development: 1/1
Software Support: 0/2

Date of Rating: February 2018


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User Experience

Objective Quality Score: 3.59/5.00

Subscale scores:
Engagement: 3.80
Functionality: 3.38
Aesthetics: 2.83
Information: 4.33

Subjective quality score: 3.25

Perceived impact score: 3.33

Rating date: November 2017
Rated by: Queensland University


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Transparency

Overall Score: Acceptable

Overall Score: Acceptable

Does the app have a privacy policy?:Yes
Does the privacy policy state that the app does not collect data?:Yes


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More Information

Available For: Requires iOS 6.1 or later. Compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch; Android compatibility varies with device
Developer: DHA Connected Health
Type of Treatment: Cognitive Behavioral Principles, Symptom Tracking/Self-Monitoring, Gratitude
Targeted Conditions: Mood Disorders, PTSD
Target Audience: Adults (especially military personnel)
Designed to be used in conjunction with a healthcare professional: No, but recommended
Languages Available: English, German, Japanese, Polish, and Simplified Chinese

Cost: Free
Get it on: Google PlayiTunes

Research on this App

Virtual Hope Box has been evaluated in three randomized control trials under the US Department of Defense, all of which have found that the app can decrease feelings of stress and anxiety in individuals experiencing symptoms of depression more significantly than a control symptom-tracking condition.