What is PETRA?


PETRA is a web-based e-health tool for personalized diaries in mental health care. PETRA is integrated in the personal health record systems of several mental health care facilities in the Northern Netherlands. PETRA helps clinicians and patients to construct a personalized diary together and visualizes the gathered data in a clinically relevant way. The personalized diaries are based on scientific studies on the experience sampling method (ESM) or ecological momentary assessment (EMA).


PETRA can be used by adults currently receiving treatment at mental health care facilities in The Netherlands. Focus lies on patients with affective, anxiety, or psychotic complaints. Clinicians that can use PETRA are psychologists, psychiatrists, and psychiatric nurses.


Research shows that ESM can have many advantages for patients and clinicians.

For patients, personalized diaries can help to:

  • Gain insight into when you have complaints and how you can cope with them
  • Boost self-management
  • Regain a sense of control over your well-being and treatment
  • Improve the relationship with the clinician

For clinicians, personalized diaries can help to:

  • Guide decisions on the direction of treatment
  • Gain insight in patients’ experiences outside the therapy room
  • Make traditional behavioral registration more efficient and detailed