Woebot – A Chat with Rhonda Widewman from the Waterloo Wellington LHIN

We sat down with Rhonda Wideman to learn more about Woebot – an app with an artificially intelligent chatbot that helps individuals monitor their mood and learn about themselves.

So what is Woebot?

Woebot uses evidence-based cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT) techniques to equip their users with the tools they need. Woebot has been shown to reduce symptoms associated with anxiety and depression in just two weeks. The chatbot helps users think through situations with step-by-step guidance using methods from CBT. An escalation feature identi es when the user requires additional help from humans. 

Rhonda explained that the difference between Woebot and other apps is that the user interface of woebot does not feel like you’re doing a course and filing out workbooks, it is engaging and it feels more like a “friend”.

Woebot asks people how they’re feeling and what is going on in their lives in the format of brief daily conversations. The chatbox has over 150 evidence-based lessons, exercises and stories from a team of experts in clinical psychology. 

The Ontario Version

Rhonda and her team at the Waterloo Wellington LHIN have been working with Woebot to create a version of the app that is more specific to Ontario. Though it is locally focused in the Waterloo Wellington region, there is a lot to gain for users across Ontario. 

This version is available to any Ontario resident over the age of 18. 

At the moment Woebot is available in English only but they are working on making the app available in french as well. 

You can download the app here: https://woebot.page.link/ontario

For Ontario/ local Waterloo-Wellington-based content, users need to select one of the options in the drop-down menu starting with ww (e.g., wwstudent). 

For more information about the science behind Woebot, visit www.woebot.io/the-science. 

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