A lasting recovery from an addiction is more likely by an accurate understanding of the addictive process, as well as finding a program or method that suits the addict’s individual needs. However, current methods are far from personalized, and many experts are skeptical. For example, many estimate that the failure rate of Alcoholics Anonymous is as high as 90 percent. The 12-step program is certainly not a one-size-fits-all.
The New York-based startup Addicaid is developing an app that is designed to provide addiction recovery support. The CEO, Sam Frons, built the app after struggling with finding a program that met her needs. She longed for the peer support of meeting, but did not like the rigidity of the 12-step program of Alcoholics Anonymous, and felt that treatment needed a new tool that would help her get to meetings and find peers.
While the app started as a tool to find meetings, it has grown to include creation of private profiles where users are able to manage and rate meetings, set goals and track progress, daily notifications, and engage with peers through comments, likes and mentions. In addition, it includes a news feed with entertaining articles, videos and music to inspire and motivate the users. The Facebook-like app is today for about 20 different addictions, including alcoholics, gamblers, overeaters and sex addicts, and currently they have over 7,000 daily users.
Addicaid is a new way to begin and maintain recovery from an addiction. It provide easier access to information, instant help and support when needed, in general improving access to recovery both geographically and demographically. Most importantly, the app give each individual user the opportunity to find personalized solutions to prevent and treat their addiction based on their own needs, addictive process, as well as reasons for having an addiction in the first place. This significantly improve adherence, and chance of a lasting recovery.
The startup is part of the Dreamit Health Class of 2016, ranked as one of the top business accelerators in the world by Forbes. Addicaid is looking to introduce a premium version of the app that will have addiction counselors, coaches, and include Cognitive Behavioral Therapies.