Almirall-backed psoriasis support app Claro launches in Europe

Psoriatic hands crossed over each other

An alliance between Spanish drugmaker Almirall and digital health company Happify has yielded its first fruit, with the launch of their Claro app designed to reduce anxiety and improve wellbeing in people with psoriasis.

The web-based app is rolling out first in the UK, Spain and Italy and is aimed at the 20% to 30% of patients with moderate to severe psoriasis who also suffer from mental health issues, according to the partners.

Happify and Almirall first joined forces on the development of the cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) and positive psychology-based app in 2021. It is an adaptation of the Happify's eponymous wellness app, which has been downloaded more than half a million times from Google's Play store.

Earlier this year, the results of a 219-subject study trial of the Happify app found a 27% improvement in subjective wellbeing in people with moderate to severe psoriasis, with anxiety symptoms reduced by the same margin.

Claro is described as the "first iteration" of Happify for psoriasis, and has been made available in English, Spanish, Italian and French languages. It is being made available as part of Almirall's psoriasis patient support programme.

Users sign up to the service on the web, answering some initial assessment questions to gauge whether the app is suitable for them and recommending suitable content.

After this onboarding stage, they create an account and answer some disease-specific questions before starting the programme, which includes interactive games, activities, guided meditations and community-building tools, overseen by a digital coach called Anna.

Almirall is a specialist in psoriasis therapies with drugs like Skilarence (dimethyl fumarate) and Ilumetri (tildrakizumab) in its portfolio.

Along with its Happify alliance, the drugmaker is also working with Finnish start-up Popit on a digital device and app combination that provides educational support to patients and help them adhere to psoriasis treatment

Happify meanwhile has been partnering with healthcare organisations to develop other versions of its digital health platform targeted at specific health conditions.

That includes a partnership with the American Heart Association (AHA) on an app that aims to reduce stress and encourage healthy behaviour in people with high blood pressure and high cholesterol.