ENgage YOung people earlY (ENYOY): a mixed-method study design for a digital transdiagnostic clinical - and peer- moderated treatment platform for youth with beginning mental health complaints in the Netherlands

M. van Doorn*, A. Popma, T. van Amelsvoort, C. McEnery, J.F. Gleeson, F.G. Ory, M.W.M. Jaspers, M. Alvarez-Jimenez, D.H. Nieman

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

3 Citations (Web of Science)


Background The onset of mental disorders typically occurs between the ages of 12 and 25, and the burden of mental health problems is the most consequential for this group. Indicated prevention interventions to target individuals with subclinical symptoms to prevent the transition to clinical levels of disorders, even leading to suicide, have shown to be effective. However, the threshold to seek help appears to be high. Digital interventions could offer a solution, especially during the Covid-19 pandemic. This implementation study will investigate the digital indicated prevention intervention ENgage YOung people Early (ENYOY), the Dutch version of the original Moderated Online Social Therapy Platform (MOST+) from Australia. In addition, the relationship between stress biomarkers, symptoms and outcome measures of youth using the platform will be investigated in this study. Methods The MOST+ platform will be adapted, translated and developed for the situation in the Netherlands in collaboration with a Youth Panel. A prospective cohort of 125 young people (16-25 years) with beginning mental health complaints will be on the platform and followed for a year, of which 10 participants will have an additional smart watch and 10 participants will be asked to provide feedback about the platform. Data will be collected at baseline and after 3, 6 and 12 months. Outcome measures are Psychological Distress assessed with the Kessler Psychological Distress Scale (K10), Social and occupational functioning (measures by the SOFAS), positive mental health indicators measured by the Positive Health Instrument, stress biomarkers with a smart-watch, website journeys of visitors, and feedback of youth about the platform. It will be a mixed-method study design, containing qualitative and quantitative measures. Discussion This trial will specifically address young people with emerging mental health complaints, and offers a new approach for treatment in the Netherlands. Considering the waiting lists in (child and adolescent)-psychiatry and the increase in suicides among youth, early low-threshold and non-stigmatizing help to support young people with emerging psychiatric symptoms is of crucial importance. Moreover, this project aims to bridge the gap between child and adolescent and adult psychiatry.
Original languageEnglish
Article number368
Number of pages12
JournalBMC Psychiatry
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 23 Jul 2021


  • Indicated prevention
  • Mental health
  • E-health
  • Digital
  • Youth
  • Headspace
  • Stress-biomarkers
  • Moderated online social therapy (MOST plus )
  • Well-being
  • Early detection and intervention

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