Therapy by chatbot? The promise and challenges in using AI for mental health
Pyx Health founder and CEO, Cindy Jordan, was interviewed by NPR for their article, “Therapy by chatbot? The promise and challenges in using AI for mental health.”
“We have not reached a point where, in an affordable, scalable way, AI can understand every sort of response that a human might give, particularly those in crisis,” says Cindy Jordan, CEO of Pyx Health, which has an app designed to communicate with people who feel chronically lonely.
Jordan says Pyx’s goal is to broaden access to care — the service is now offered in 62 U.S. markets and is paid for by Medicaid and Medicare. But she also balances that against worries that the chatbot might respond to a suicidal person, ” ‘Oh, I’m sorry to hear that.’ Or worse, ‘I don’t understand you.’ ” That makes her nervous, she says, so as a backup, Pyx staffs a call center with people who call users when the system flags them as potentially in crisis.