eSense: an online psychological intervention for women’s health

Sexual dysfunction affects up to 1/3 of women across ages, cultures, and social conditions. The World Health Organization recognizes sexual health as a fundamental part of general health and quality of life. Our research shows that face-to-face cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) and mindfulness (MBT) are effective for treating women’s sexual concerns. Yet these treatments reach only a small segment of women, and are accessible primarily to women who have the means to commute to large centres. Access barriers disproportionately affect women of colour, women of Indigenous communities, and women living in rural and remote regions.

We propose that online treatment programs are an effective strategy to solve this problem. In this project, we will evaluate our online program for women’s sexual dysfunction, named eSense, which contains separate modules of CBT and MBT therapy skills. We will then make eSense available to patients seeking healthcare in two Vancouver sexual health clinics and collect user feedback to further improve the program. The longer term goal is to commercialize eSense as a tool to deliver evidence-based skills for improving sexual health in women and improve their quality of life.