Until recently, contrary to the opinions of many experts, many people considered video games to be harmful to young audiences, meanwhile today we are witnessing the first title to be prescribed with a prescription.
And we’re talking about the game EndeavorRX from Akili Interactive, formerly known as Project EVO, which has been officially approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration as a treatment for children with ADHD. Of course, the product has come a long way before that, as it was tested on 600 volunteers for 7 years to see if it actually had therapeutic value, but it finally did and is now set to be prescribed by doctors to children aged 8-12. According to its authors, testing has shown that as many as one-third of children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder treated with the game “no longer manifest measurable attention deficits on at least one attentional measure.”
And what dosage are we talking about? To achieve such results, it was enough to give the children to play 25 minutes a day, 5 days a week for a period of 4 weeks – with persuading the children to play also not a problem, because the game involving avoiding obstacles and collecting various finds is quite attractive for the mentioned age group. As the creators claim: – The improvement in ADHD after a month of EndeavorRx treatment lasted for about a month, and the most common side effects, namely frustration and headache, were mild and negligible compared to classical treatment.
At this point, however, it’s worth noting that a group of doctors working with the developer weren’t that thrilled with the results, because while they said there was a significant improvement, it wasn’t enough for the game to completely replace previously accepted methods of treating ADHD. There’s no denying, however, that it’s another therapy to try because it can help, and it certainly doesn’t hurt since it’s been certified by the FDA – especially since there are children who don’t respond to traditional treatments and this may be their only chance for improvement.
So naturally, Akili Interactive’s next step is the game’s official release, and you can already sign up for a special list if you want to try it as soon as possible (unfortunately, the developer hasn’t given a specific date yet, so this might be the best way to stay on topic). It’s also important to note that while EndeavorRX is indeed the first prescription video game, Bayer had already launched an FDA-approved Didget glucose meter plugged into a Nintendo DS console in 2010 that allowed sugar levels to be measured during the unique Knock Em Downs™ game: World’s Fair.