UneeQ creates world's first digital human mental wellbeing coach for Mentemia
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UneeQ creates world's first digital human mental wellbeing coach for Mentemia

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One of the most interesting discoveries is how digital humans can help overcome the fear of judgement. Conversations that centre around personal mental health can often be stigmatised – this is where digital humans as a starting interaction can thrive
– Danny Tomsett

Uneeq, a United States and New Zealand-based digital human company, has worked with mental wellbeing platform Mentemia to transform famous New Zealand rugby union player, Sir John Kirwan, into the world's first digital human mental health coach.

Through advanced conversational artificial intelligence, natural language processing, a friendly tone of voice, and human-like facial expressions, Digital John Kirwan – or DJK – serves as a personalised wellbeing coach designed to help individuals cope with some of the most common stressors in the world today, such as poor sleep, anxiety and stress.

Digital humans created by Uneeq are brought to life using conversational AI. It allows digital humans to build emotional connections with people, leading to rapport and the creation of trust.

Support for this was seen in a recent Oracle survey of over 12,000 employees, which found that 82 per cent of people believe AI can support their mental health better than humans. 68 per cent stated they preferred to speak to AI versus their manager about stress and anxiety at work.

"At UneeQ we are passionate about our tech being used to positively impact people's lives," said Danny Tomsett, CEO of UneeQ.

"It has been a privilege to work alongside Mentemia as they bring DJK to life. Digital humans are consistently increasing engagement for our customers, but one of the most interesting discoveries is how they help overcome the fear of judgement. Conversations that centre around personal mental health can often be stigmatised and hard to openly share one's feelings with others – this is where digital humans as a starting interaction can thrive."

The Mentemia workplace wellbeing platform was created by Sir John Kirwan, tech entrepreneur Adam Clark, and an expert team of medical advisors. Primarily delivered through an app, Mentemia is gifted by employers to their people, providing them with practical tips and techniques to help them take control of daily stressors and their overall mental wellbeing.

Mentemia's personalised digital wellbeing coach merges machine-learning and AI with human-like qualities and interactions to offer engaging, empathetic, meaningful conversation and advice to users. Available to premium users, individuals can engage and interact with DJK, which is able to leverage current and previous conversations to offer personalised advice, suggestions and tactics to help users home in on what is and isn't working for them. The digital coach can even encourage people to seek out a professional mental health specialist when needed.

"It's well known there is a huge need for mental wellbeing support and using digital solutions is one of the most effective and efficient ways to reach as many people as possible," says Kirwan.

"Digital humans are not a replacement for real therapists, but AI is a really important part of the future of mental wellbeing. We hope through DJK our users will see the potential of how AI can support their mental wellbeing in the future."

The help DJK provides is backed by science, pulling his expertise from hundreds of sources as well as the applied knowledge of Mentemia's clinicians and psychological experts.

"We've already deployed DJK as a sleep coach to help people develop and maintain better sleeping patterns and routines," said Adam Clark, CEO and co-founder of Mentemia.

"We can't wait to expand to other core wellbeing areas in the coming months and help individuals continue to discover what makes them feel more energised, more productive, and better equipped for whatever the world throws at them."

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UneeQ, a digital human company, has worked with mental wellbeing platform Mentemia to transform famous New Zealand rugby player, Sir John Kirwan, into the world's first digital human mental health coach.
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