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Depressed? There’s an app for that

An app that acts as your therapist to treat depression and anxiety has been launched by Northwestern Medicine in Chicago.

Intellicare is actually a suite of 12 interactive mini-apps. The Intellicare algorithm will recommend new apps each week that teach skills in fighting depression or anxiety. Each one was designed by Northwestern clinicians and based on techniques used by therapists.

“We know these approaches work,” said David Mohr, professor of preventive medicine at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine and director of the Center for Behavioral Intervention Technologies. “They are designed to teach many of the same skills that therapists try to teach people. Different things work for different people. The goal is to find what’s right for you.

“This is precision medicine for treating depression and anxiety delivered directly to the user,” he said.

“Using digital tools for mental health is an important part of our future. It will help the millions of people who want support but can’t get to a therapist’s office.”

The new mini apps are currently free for download on Google Play for Android phones.

Bill Condie

Bill Condie is a science journalist based in Adelaide, Australia.

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