Woebot Health Unveils Scientific Advisory Board
Esteemed group of healthcare and technology leaders to guide Woebot Health’s scientific and clinical vision, accelerate the future of tech-enabled mental healthcare
SAN FRANCISCO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Woebot Health today announced the formation of its Scientific Advisory Board, a group of healthcare and technology leaders whose deep and diverse experience will help advance the company’s clinical and research and development activities as it develops the next generation of digital therapeutics that engage people in their mental health.
“The formation of our Scientific Advisory Board is a foundational next step as we continue to expand our overall body of research, as well as advance through the FDA regulatory process,” said Chief Clinical Officer and Board Co-Chair, Athena Robinson. “We look forward to leveraging our new board members’ expertise to enable a future where clinically-validated digital solutions are an integral part of a comprehensive ecosystem of care.”
Woebot Health has pioneered the development of software designed to create and maintain a therapeutic working alliance — a foundational concept to enable meaningful engagement and improved outcomes in mental health. Woebot, the company’s digital coach, offers clinically-validated therapeutic approaches including Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), and is the basis for its automated coaching solutions for adults, postpartum women and adolescents as well as a pipeline of prescription digital therapeutics (PDTs).
Founding members of Woebot Health’s Scientific Advisory Board include:
Stewart Agras, MD: Having founded one of the first programs in behavioral medicine in the United States, Dr. Agras is presently Professor Emeritus of Psychiatry in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University School of Medicine, and is continuing his internally recognized research program in implementation science of evidence based psychotherapy. For much of his career Dr. Agras’ research interests have been in the investigation of behavior change in areas such as eating disorders, treatment compliance, essential hypertension and other cardiovascular risk factors, and anxiety disorders. Dr. Agras has been editor of the Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis and the Annals of Behavioral Medicine. He has also served as the president of the Association for the Advancement of Behavior Therapy (AABT) and was the first president of the Society for Behavioral Medicine.
Charles Gross, PhD: A national C-suite leader in behavioral health with over three decades of management, operations and clinical experience, Dr. Gross’ clinical experience includes working in both inpatient and outpatient settings and in the delivery of therapeutic services and psychological testing. His career in behavioral health began with Kaiser Permanente, where he provided direct care and was responsible for behavioral health services in a large tri-state region in the United States. Dr. Gross’ extensive C-suite healthcare management experience features leadership positions with two of the nation’s largest health insurance companies; at one of them, he was the senior executive responsible for behavioral health operations for all commercial, Medicare and Medicaid benefit plans. Dr. Gross excels at combining healthcare strategy, operations, and profit and loss (P&L) responsibilities to advance whole person health via earlier access to behavioral health services. He is passionate about operationalizing evidence based healthcare that systematically addresses primary, secondary and tertiary behavioral health needs.
Dan Jurafsky, PhD: A Professor of Linguistics and Professor of Computer Science at Stanford University, Dr. Jurafsky is the recipient of a 2002 MacArthur Fellowship, a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and a fellow of the Association for Computational Linguistics, the Linguistics Society of America, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. He is also the co-author of the widely-used textbook "Speech and Language Processing" and co-creator of the first massively open online course in Natural Language Processing. Dr. Jurafsky’s trade book, "The Language of Food: A Linguist Reads the Menu," was a finalist for the 2015 James Beard Award. His research ranges widely across natural language processing as well as its applications to the behavioral and social sciences.
Jane Tiller, MBChB (MD), MPhil, MBA: Dr. Tiller is the Chief Medical Officer at Blackthorn Therapeutics. As a leader, Dr. Tiller combines scientific, medical, and business expertise to effectively manage high performing clinical organizations and lead all facets of drug development from clinical research to medical affairs. She has 14 years of experience leading pharmaceutical medical organizations in the United States and Europe, across multiple therapeutic areas, including neuroscience, immunology, virology, cardiovascular, immune-oncology, sleep medicine and pain. Her deep understanding of health care dynamics, behavioral health technologies and physician and patient needs is informed by 17 years of clinical and academic medical practice, including five years as clinical director at the Maudsley Hospital in London.
Athena Robinson, PhD: The Chief Clinical Officer at Woebot Health and Adjunct Clinical Associate Professor at Stanford’s School of Medicine. Dr. Robinson oversees the company’s regulatory strategy and overall program of research, as well as the empirically-supported psychotherapeutic underpinnings of the Woebot Health products. Her areas of expertise include evidence-based digital therapeutics, implementation science, and treatment-outcome behavioral health research. She is the recipient of a number of research awards and fellowships, including from the National Institutes of Drug Abuse, the National Institutes of Mental Health, the National Cancer Institute, the NCAA, and Stanford University, and is the author of dozens of original peer-reviewed research publications, articles, books and book chapters on subjects ranging from digital mental health technology to eating disorders and professional well being.
Timothy Mariano, MD, PhD, MSc: Vice President and Medical Director at Woebot Health, Board Co-Chair and Adjunct Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and Human Behavior at the Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University. Dr. Mariano provides medical, clinical and regulatory leadership for Woebot Health’s growing pipeline of prescription digital therapeutics and for its scientific partnerships. Before joining the company, he was medical director at Sage Therapeutics, where he led the clinical development, medical monitoring and regulatory strategy for several early and late-stage studies. Before that, he was an assistant psychiatrist at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and an instructor at Harvard Medical School. A prolific researcher with dozens of articles published in peer-reviewed publications, Dr. Mariano has received research awards and fellowships from, among others, the Career Development Institute for Psychiatry, the Brain and Behavior Research Foundation and the NIMH Outstanding Resident Award Program. He is a licensed psychiatrist practicing at the Providence VA Medical Center in Rhode Island and an investigator at its Center for Neurorestoration and Neurotechnology (CfNN).
Alison Darcy, PhD: Founder and President of Woebot Health and Adjunct Faculty member in the Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences Department of Stanford’s School of Medicine. A clinical research psychologist and health tech visionary, Dr. Darcy’s work to explore how digital treatments can help solve human problems began more than 20 years ago, when she created one of the first online support groups for people with eating disorders. That work led to PhD level studies in psychology at University College Dublin and post-doctoral training at Stanford School of Medicine and with the American Psychiatric Association. At Stanford, she also worked with AI pioneer Andrew Ng to explore the intersection of AI and healthcare, leading his Health Innovation Lab in Computer Science. A frequent speaker on digital therapeutics design and development, barriers to care and engagement, Dr. Darcy has authored more than 40 publications and been awarded research grants and contracts from the NIH, the Davis Foundation and APA.
About Woebot Health
Founded in 2017, Woebot Health has created relational technologies that underpin a new generation of digital therapeutics and tools for mental health. The company’s proprietary relational agent, Woebot, is capable of quickly forming a bond with users and delivering human-like therapeutic encounters that are psychologically related, responsive to a person’s dynamic state of health, and targeted using multidisciplinary tools. Woebot is at the heart of the company’s AI-powered platform and the foundation for digital therapeutics and tools that seamlessly integrate within health ecosystems and solve for gaps along the health care journey. For more information, please visit woebothealth.com or follow Woebot on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.
Margot Carlson Delogne