Meet the innovator: Emma Selby

    February 28, 2022


    Post Title

    In this edition, we caught up with Emma Selby, CAMHS Lead and Clinical Safety Officer from WYSA; an Artificial Intelligence company helping users gain access to early mental health support.

    Pictured above: Emma Selby

    Tell us about your innovation in a sentence:

    Using Artificial Intelligence to support everyone in accessing mental health tools.

    What was the ‘lightbulb’ moment?

    I was working as a mental health nurse in services and doing some co-design work with a patient when it just hit us, something has to change. There are not enough therapists to support the number of people coming through services, we have to make mental health and wellbeing more accessible.

    What three bits of advice would you give budding innovators?

    1. Get networking – social media can be your friend so learn how to use it within your professional code.
    2. You don’t know what you don’t know – and it’s okay to admit it. Don’t be afraid to say when you don’t understand something.
    3. Look after yourself – there is a culture in innovation and start ups that you must work your fingers to the bone. Take time to look after yourself or you will burn out.

    What’s been your toughest obstacle?

    AI is a very emerging technology, particularly within the mental health sector. Services are rightly concerned with risk and safety so it was important that we spent a lot of time getting the clinical safety case as strong as it can be.

    What’s been your innovator journey highlight?

    Being the first Mental Health AI application to be awarded an AI in Healthcare Grant by NIHR and NHSX.

    Best part of your job now?

    Being at the forefront of developmental changes in my profession and helping to shape the future of the UK mental health offering.

    If you were in charge of the NHS and care system, what’s the one thing you’d do to speed up health innovation?

    Have a single place where everyone across the country can go to find out about the innovations available.

    A typical day for you would include…

    Lots of online meetings, calls and paperwork as well as a good walk with my dog Arty so I can take a break from my screen.

    Where can we find you?

    Visit our website or follow us on Twitter @wysabuddy or myself personally @Emmyselby