UpLift Health, a digital health company focused on treating depression, has landed $1 million in seed funding. This early funding round was led by Laidir Foundation, a Washington-based research and development organization.
WHAT THEY DO
The Atlanta-based startup has created an app that employs cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) to help users with depression. The platform includes 12 chatbot-guided sessions, each lasting 45-minutes, as well as a toolkit. Users can participate by answering questions, completing mental exercises and getting feedback and guidance from a bot, according to the company’s webpage.
The company charges its users $29.99 for a monthly subscription or $14.99 a month for a quarterly subscription.
WHAT IT'S FOR
The new cash will be put towards developing the technology. The company’s CEO, Eddie Liu, said the startup will also be looking at building new features that have been requested by users, such as gamification and connections to in-person coaches.
When it comes to digital health, the mental health field is hot. Some startup are using AI and bots to help patients.
For example, Woebot is an AI mental health chatbot that first debuted as a Facebook Messenger app in 2017. Since then it has become a smartphone app. In 2018 it landed $8 million in Series A funding.
Still, many of the big players in the digital mental health space focus on liaising connections between providers and patients. For example, Talkspace, a digital platform that connects mental health services to providers, recently landed $50 million in Series D funding. Basis, a consumer mental health counseling app, and AbleTo, a direct-to-consumer virtual health platform, are a few examples of other platforms that let customers connect with mental health counselors.
ON THE RECORD
“I’m very excited about the initial results related to UpLift’s effectiveness,” Spencer Greenberg, cofounder and CTO of UpLift, said in a statement. “Our goal is to make UpLift the best software product in the world for helping people reduce their own depression symptoms, so we’re going to be continually iterating and refining the app.”
Correction: A previous version of this story referred to UpLift as a chat bot. It has been updated to reflect that the product is a CBT app.