United Kingdom, United States and India
Wysa, an AI chatbot, available on the app store and google play store, provides a 24/7 chat feature as well access to well-being coaches and therapy services.
No sign-up, email ID, or phone number is needed to talk to Wysa. This completely anonymous service gives users an emotionally intelligent bot to talk with at any time. The platform uses cognitive-behavioural techniques, dialectical behavioural techniques, meditation, breathing exercises, yoga and more to help users build mental resilience. Specifically, people experiencing low mood, stress, anxiety, or anyone who wants to improve their emotional stability could benefit from the features. The self-help techniques suggested are all approved by professional psychologists and a scientific advisory board with mental health professionals worldwide.
For free, anyone aged 13 and above can access Wysa’s chatbot, a penguin, and receive motivational conversation and micro-actions from an empathetic and judgment-free source.
These AI-based conversations are not designed to provide diagnosis or treatment options. Rather they are advertised as viable ways in which users can practice their skills learned in therapy or talk through their situation. The “journey” feature on the app is designed to let users view their previous conversations at any point, so their progress can be tracked.
With the premium version of Wysa for users who are 18 and older, human well-being coaches and therapist services are readily available. Each user is assigned one well-being coach or therapist available for 30-minute, scheduled live-text conversations. Users also can let their well-being coach or therapist view their chats with the AI Bot. Well-being coaches offer motivational interviewing and life coaching to support users in finding their own way. Similarly, therapists offer person-centred supportive listening while applying CBT principles to help users control their mental and emotional well-being.
Both the well-being coaches and therapists have at least a master’s degree in clinical or counselling psychology. They are affiliated to or hold membership of organisations such as the American Psychological Association, the British Psychological Society, and the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy. These features are not intended to replace face-to-face psychotherapy. If users are receiving therapy for a long-term health condition, they are encouraged to talk to their clinician before using Wysa.
Besides individual use, Wysa offers partnerships with various institutions, such as schools, employers, insurance agencies and more. All information from users is kept confidential. However, institutions can understand what challenges users face, as Wysa will show commonly talked about subjects, such as financial uncertainty, relationships and Covid-19. Additionally, organisers can run a mental health calendar catered to the specific needs of their users, define cohorts, add custom care pathways. They will subsequently receive real-time analytics and insights.