UPDATE : Friday, July 3, 2020
Meditation apps help fight COVID-19 mental stress
  • By Kim Eun-young
  • Published 2020.03.12 15:31
  • Updated 2020.03.12 15:31
  • comments 0

Amid the prolonged new coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, digital healthcare providers quickly rolled out new products to help people overcome anxiety caused by the spread of the deadly virus.

The new devices range from mindfulness applications targeting depression to virtual reality (VR) gears that help psychiatric therapies. They all aim to relieve stress and maintain psychological composure.

One of them is Mabo, a mobile app created by You Jung-eun, who majored in organizational psychology in college. She benchmarked the 2016 meditation method created by former Googler Chade-Meng Tan.

Mabo provides eight free psychological contents not only for COVID-19 patients and those in self-quarantine who could suffer from depression and anxiety but children and parents who are stuck at home, and healthcare workers.

Mabo Inc. started to offer meditation programs to children in January at the request of the National Center for Disaster Trauma, which supported psychological care for Koreans living in Wuhan, China, where the first COVID-19 case was reported.

Together with the Seoul Medical Center’s Human Understanding Design Center, the company produces and distributes meditation programs for COVID-19 patients, suspected patients in self-quarantine, medical workers.

Mago also used the Seoul Metropolitan Government COVID-19 Psychological Support Team’s “Mindfulness Vaccine” meditation content to help children and caregivers to meditate together at home.

Contents related to COVID-19 are also provided through free mobile platforms, including Kakao’s Kakao Together, Naver’s Audio Clip, local podcast Podbbang, and Apple’s Podcasts.

An official at the Seoul Metropolitan Government’s Disaster Safety Countermeasures Headquarters tries out CureGlass, a virtual reality (VR) device, to treat stress disorder amid the city’s fight against COVID-19.

Also noteworthy is CureGlass, a VR device for psychiatric therapy by Psycure, adopted by the Seoul Metropolitan Government’s Health Management Team.

As the COVID-19 outbreak persisted longer, the City Hall installed CureGlass at a shelter in the Disaster Safety Countermeasures Headquarters to help relieve the stress of the staff in the situation room.

According to Psycure, VR psychological therapy can treat stress disorder, panic disorder, and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

CureGlass is equipped with various cognitive distortion filters so that people exposed to various stressful environments can alleviate stress.


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