June 17, 2020

A new treatment for ADHD? First-ever Rx video game lands a high score

This announcement of FDA approval for a prescription video game could break new ground in digital therapeutics.

Photo: Akili

For kids with ADHD, a little extra screen time might be just what the doctor ordered. The FDA just gave Akili Interactive Labs the go-ahead to market a video game called EndeavorRx as a potential treatment.

This announcement could pave the way for other prescription games in the burgeoning digital therapeutics market.

So, gaming is good for us now?

Park that Mario Kart, bruh. 

EndeavorRx sends users through different worlds to complete tasks. It was designed around algorithms that have been shown to strengthen the neural networks associated with focus.

Now that it’s scored FDA approval, doctors can prescribe EndeavorRx to kids between the ages of 8 and 12 who have been diagnosed with ADHD. The game is meant to be an add-on to broader therapeutic regimens that might also include traditional therapy and medication.

Some patients got a sneak peek during the COVID-19 lockdown period, but now it’s time for Akili to start courting doctors — and perhaps more importantly — insurers.

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