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Cedars launches Xaia for Apple Vision Pro

Cedars-Sinai has developed a behavioral health app, Xaia, where patients can experience immersive therapy with a trained AI avatar.
By admin
Feb 12, 2024, 9:39 AM

Cedars-Sinai and artificial intelligence researchers have announced Xaia, an behavioral health app that is usable with the Apple Vision Pro virtual reality headset.  

Xaia – an acronym for eXtended-Reality Artificially Intelligent Ally – was designed to improve access to mental health resources, especially in rural or underserved areas.   

The Xaia application provides users with an immersive therapy experience guided by a specially designed digital avatar. Programmed to mimic the qualities of a human therapist, the avatar leads users through therapy sessions, creating a lifelike and engaging interaction. 

Xaia offers spatial environments that users can choose from, like a meadow or beach, to augment deep breathing or mediation.  

“Apple Vision Pro has allowed us to create a platform where technology fades into the background and the user’s healing journey comes to the forefront,” said Omer Liran, MD, co-founder of Xaia and a psychiatrist at Cedars-Sinai in a statement. “This application is a culmination of years of rigorous research, clinical expertise and a vision to democratize mental wellness in a way that respects the uniqueness of every individual’s experience. Using the powerful capabilities of Vision Pro, we’re now able to bring this experience to life with its full potential.” 

Last month, a study published in Nature suggested that using spatial computing for mental health is both helpful and safe.  

“These results provide initial evidence that VR and AI therapy has the potential to provide automated mental health support within immersive environments,” said Brennan Spiegel, MD, MSHS, professor of Medicine, director of Health Services Research at Cedars-Sinai and first and corresponding author of the study. “By harnessing the potential of technology in an evidence-based and safe manner, we can build a more accessible mental healthcare system.” 

Boston Children’s, Sharp Healthcare also leveraging spatial computing 

Boston Children’s Hospital and Sharp Healthcare are  also leveraging spatial computing to enhance healthcare delivery.  

The Immersive Design Systems team at Boston Children’s Hospital, in partnership with Apple, has created the CyranoHealth app.  

The app enables nurses and other healthcare professionals to hone their skills using medical equipment in an immersive but risk-free environment.  

Earlier this month, San Diego-based Sharp HealthCare announced the launch of the Spatial Computing Center of Excellence in partnership with Epic, Elsevier, and others.  

The Center will explore different ways to improve care delivery through the Apple Vision Pro, focusing on caregiver education and training.  

“Using Apple Vision Pro, you can immediately imagine the amazing and far-reaching implications of this technology for the practice and delivery of medicine,” said Chris Howard, president and chief executive of Sharp HealthCare in a statement. “Sharp has long been committed to transforming the health care experience, and Vision Pro is indeed a game changer, so much so that we created a center of excellence dedicated to this effort.” 

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