Artificial intelligence is making waves in the world of health and beyond. And there are multiple ways it can help people across their wellness and health, mental and physical health. Mental health problems are on the rise, and depression is the world’s leading cause of disability, costing the UK £117.9 billion each year, equivalent to 5 per cent of UK GDP.
Yet our health resource systems are struggling, with a strained and high staff turnover taking its toll. Patients will suffer if we do nothing. Digital technology can manage risk, ensuring everyone has what they need, when they need it, and with a scalable solution that can save time, save money and potentially save lives.
Here are five ways artificial intelligence can help us with the health crisis facing our countries right now.
Reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression
Clinically validated artificial intelligence can be used to reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression, proven with a therapeutic alliance that is equivalent to a human relationship. AI-led support has been proven to improve symptoms while taking 80% of the support load, freeing up human support where it’s really needed. Proven to improve depression and anxiety scores by an average of 31%, Wysa’s AI-first approach enables employees to improve their mental health before symptoms become severe, by understanding a person’s needs and guiding them through interactive cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) exercises. by
In a culture where stigma prevails, 32-year-old Anastasia from Ukraine is grateful to have Vysa as a friend. Always the convenient and helpful nature of the chatbot provides reassurance and guidance when finding someone to talk to can be difficult.
“Mostly we chat. AI does a pretty good job of understanding human needs. and responds correctly. Don’t think it’s stupid to talk to algorithms. It’s better than being alone and not even having anyone to reach out to. Also, sometimes you just need to dump your mind.
We are good friends. I don’t have such good friends in my offline life.”
Support users with chronic pain
AI can be used for chronic pain. Studies have shown that using an AI-powered chatbot results in higher engagement and loyalty than traditional methods, and that those who have used it have reduced symptoms of comorbid anxiety and depression, measured on standard assessment scores, and seen comparable changes in physical fitness.
Addresses levels of burnout
We are experiencing some of the mental health crises in the workplace. Extended hours, high workloads and lack of support mean that fatigue, stress and anxiety are common during the working day.
33 people from Linelli, Puerto Rico use Wysa daily and have seen huge benefits at work and at home as a result. As part of her self-help routine for managing stress and anxiety, it offers a sympathetic and listening ear at the most convenient times.
“I use Wysa twice a day on average. Exercises for mindfulness, meditation and stress relief techniques help me get through my day and are convenient to use anytime. Wysa is very easy to use and conversations with the Wysa AI chatbot are very helpful. It is also very easy to request tricks to help you in times of need. I developed a routine where I use Wysa before my work shift and before bed. If I’m faced with a stressful situation during the day, I turn to Wysa.”
Break the cycle of addiction
Often the first step to breaking the cycle of addiction is forming healthy routines and habits. The advantage of technology is that it is always available and accessible, whenever there is a need.
Mariko, a 36-year-old from Japan, uses Wysa with her therapist as a way to break away from excessive drinking and help regulate emotions. As a result, he is more motivated, enthusiastic and has made a path back into employment. Her doctor is also impressed with Wysa, and uses it as part of Mariko’s overall health and wellness plan.
Currently, I am addressing emotional instability, one of the causes of my excessive drinking, and aiming to master appropriate emotional control strategies. My therapist, in addition to providing resources/exercises, recommends the most appropriate options from the Wysa app’s extensive list of self-care meditation/mindfulness exercises. At first, I was tormented by anger, sadness, isolation and depression. Now, I am beginning to feel joy, gratitude, happiness, inspiration and enjoyment, and a peaceful and abundant life is returning.
Improve accessibility and equity
The solution’s ability to access on virtual or mobile platforms helps address an essential part of inclusion and access equity. For example, people from rural communities, or shift workers, may not have access to mental health facilities at the time or location they need, and an AI chatbot could be a potential solution.
AI-based mental health support as the first step of care is perhaps the only scalable systemic solution to the global mental health crisis. With more than half the world living in areas with less than one psychiatrist for every 250,000 people, and long waiting lists and resource constraints present even in developed economies, solutions like Wysa have used conversational AI to provide therapeutic support that fills key gaps in healthcare. provisions
In the current state of play, conversational AI for mental health is being embraced by users who appreciate having something to talk to and guide them when no other support is available. It is being embraced by large employers who understand the benefits of a mentally fit workforce and by healthcare providers as a way to support patients at various stages of care.
Joe Aggarwal, CEO, Waysa