Pfizer launches Moodivator, a consumer-facing app for depression

By Jonah Comstock
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Global pharmaceutical company Pfizer has launched a new consumer-facing app aimed at helping to motivate adults with depression. The app, called Moodivator, will be available for free on the iOS app store. 

“As awareness of the magnitude and severity of depression continues to mount, technology like the Moodivator app represents a new and exciting frontier for helping people with depression," Dr. Susan Kornstein, a professor of psychiatry at Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine who helped consult on the app's design, said in a statement. "The option to set, track and achieve personal goals in the Moodivator app ties in nicely with cognitive behavioral therapy techniques that I use often with my patients. The opportunity for patients to track and export their mood and goal progress in easy-to-read charts is also very useful, because the progress can then be shared with doctors to help inform care decisions.”

The app contains a few different features for people with depression. Goal-setting helps combat the apathy and lethargy common in depression by helping the user set small, manageable goals and build them up into routines. The app also has motivational messages that the user can tailor by indicating which are the most helpful.

The app also has a mood tracker, which is useful because people with depression can have a skewed perspective of their past emotions. Tracking helps create an accurate awareness of their moods, and gives them a log they can share with a mental health provider if they choose to. Users can create customizable reports to share data with their care team. They can also track food, sleep, and physical activity to see the effect those have on mood.

Moodivator isn't the first patient-facing free app Pfizer has launched. The company currently has 14 apps total in the app store, and has discontinued others in the past. At last year's HIMSS Connected Health Summit, Pfizer executives discussed two apps aimed at smoking cessation and hemophilia, and discussed the company's patient-driven app strategy.

"We recognize that the data shows patients expect meaningful digital solutions from us, and it is our obligation to deliver that," Judy Sewards, vice president of data and digital innovations, said at the time. "When we think about it at Pfizer, we’re not thinking about what's the next shiny thing, or what's the next widget or what everyone else is doing, but looking through the lens of our patients as people."