Digital Psychiatry – is Humanism “Outdated”?

At the recent congress of the German Association for Psychiatry, Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics (DGPPN), which was held in Berlin between November 27th, and December 1st, 2018, digitization was one of the dominant themes. I have published several posts on this topic over the last year (e.g., “How Digital is Man” and “Big Data in Psychiatry –  Brave New World“). At the congress there was a press conference on the topic entitled “Research and the Digital World in Psychiatry: Possible and Impossible – Where Does the Path Lead?” (the conference was in German, the original title was „Forschung und Digitale Welt in der Psychiatrie: Mögliches und Unmögliches – wo führt der Weg hin?“).DGPPN Congress 2018

Foto: Claudia Burger/DGPPN

Dr. Iris Hauth, Past President of the DGPPN, Prof. Andreas Meyer-Lindenberg, Director of the Central Institute for Mental Health in Mannheim, and myself made brief statements first, subsequently a group of medical journalists were given the opportunity to ask questions.

Meanwhile, the first press reports have been published (in German). The medical journalist Thomas Müller has published his article entitled “When the depression app rings twice” („Wenn die Depressions-App zweimal klingelt“) in various media. The article in the ÄrzteZeitung online is here publicly accessible.

The medical portal “esanum” has also published a report. Journalist Stephanie Reuter Zakirova entitled her report “Like the human brain, only better: artificial intelligence” („Wie das menschliche Gehirn, nur besser: Künstliche Intelligenz“). Click here for the article. It is interesting that Ms. Reuter Zakirova states that my position reflects an “outdated humanism”.

Is humanism outdated?