Medibio Limited is an ASX listed medical technology company that has developed an effective, objective test to help with the diagnosis of depression, chronic stress and other mental health disorders. Involving more than 15 years of research at University of Western Australia, the test uses patented (and patent pending) panel circadian, sleep and autonomic system biomarkers to objectively quantify and characterise mental illness.
Since retiring from competitive swimming in 2016, Mr Phelps, the most decorated swimmer in history, has actively sought to raise awareness of mental health. Prior to his appointment to Medibio’s Board of Directors, Mr Phelps worked with its team of world-class doctors and medical experts to explore ways in which Medibio’s technology could help address the challenges associated with the identification and treatment of various mental health issues.
Mr Phelps has used Medibio’s technology to analyse his own personal datasets and experienced first-hand how it is uniquely positioned to address the challenges associated with mental health diagnosis.
“I am honoured to accept this appointment because I have personally experienced Medibio’s technology and believe it can help make a profound impact in diagnosing mental health and empowering people to seek the help and support they may need.
“In sports, there is so much focus on the physical aspects of performance, and athletes are analysed from head to toe. But for many athletes, mental health has not been a topic of focus, and the data analysis aspect of it has been missing up until now,” said Mr Phelps.
“I personally suffered from mental health challenges from my teenage years on, and only fairly recently – after reaching a point of desperation – did I acquire the understanding, treatment, and support I needed, which has truly changed my life.
“For me, self-awareness, from a mental health standpoint, is empowerment. But I’ve seen firsthand – in sports and beyond – how difficult it is for people to understand, discuss, and confront stress, anxiety, and mental health concerns, all of which can seem like an insurmountable barrier to getting the help and support that is needed,” Mr Phelps said.
“I feel that the ease and objectivity with which Medibio’s technology can accurately help to diagnose mental health will make a profound difference in people’s lives. I want to help others who are dealing with these challenges and make the process for them to take action easier and more understandable.”
Medibio Managing Director and CEO, Mr Jack Cosentino, welcomed Mr Phelps’appointment to his Board, citing “We are thrilled to have Michael join our Board of Directors as a true champion of the mental health community. His joining the Board of Directors brings recognition and validates the great need for objective mental health diagnosis that we offer through our industry-leading technology.
“His lifelong dedication to excellence in the pool, his advocacy for mental health, and his understanding of data-driven solutions will provide a great addition to our Board,” said Mr Phelps.
“Michael’s significant public profile will raise substantial awareness of mental health challenges and the real, tangible solutions that Medibio’s diagnostics can provide.”
Widely regarded as one of the greatest athletes of all-time, Mr Phelps has dedicated his time, fame, and focus to a number of philanthropic causes including water-safety, mental health, and anti-doping initiatives.
His advocacy for mental health recently earned the recognition of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s (“SAMHSA”) as the Honorary Chairperson of National Mental Health Awareness Day 2017 and recipient of the organizations Special Recognition Award. In addition, Mr Phelps is an Ambassador for the Child Mind Institute’s #MyYoungerSelf social media campaign in an effort to help end the stigmas associated with mental health and learning disorders.
Mr Phelps established the Michael Phelps Foundation in 2008 with the focus on growing the sport of swimming and promoting healthy and active lifestyles, especially for children. The Foundation’s signature program – “im” – was developed in collaboration with KidsHealth.org and Michael Phelps Swimming to provide water-safety instruction, recreational pool activities, and swim training, as well as health, wellness, and goal-setting education.
In addition, Mr Peter Carlisle, Managing Director of Octagon’s Olympic and Action Sports division and Mr Phelps’ agent, will serve as an alternate Board Member. Widely regarded as among the most influential figures in the Olympic and action sports movements, Mr Carlisle has dedicated his career to advocating for athletes and has witnessed firsthand the prevalence of mental health issues among elite athletes, the extent to which they are overlooked, and the profound need for increased awareness, education, treatment, and support. Prior to joining Octagon, he founded Carlisle Sports Management, a boutique Olympic and action sports representation agency, and served as an Attorney at Preti Flaherty. He earned his Juris Doctor from the University of Maine School of Law and Bachelor of Arts from Bates College.
Medibio Chairman, Chris Indermaur said, “We sincerely welcome Michael and Peter to the board of Medibio and look forward to their contribution as the company continues to progress its unique mental illness diagnostic technology on many active pathways toward clinical and corporate validation. I am confident that this addition will be very warmly welcomed by all our shareholders.”
About Medibio Limited
Medibio (ASX: MEB), is an evidence-based medical technology company that has developed an objective test to assist in the diagnosis and management of depression, chronic stress and other mental health disorders. Based on research conducted over 15 years at the University of Western Australia, this test utilises patented (and patent pending) panel circadian, sleep and autonomic system biomarkers to objectively quantify and characterise mental illness. Medibio’s depression diagnostic is being validated in clinical studies undertaken by Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and The University of Ottawa, among others. The clinical trials will support Medibio’s application to become the first FDA approved, objective, and evidence-based approach to the diagnosis of mental health disorders. Medibio’s technology also provides an objective method for the assessment of stress and mental wellbeing that can be translated to the workplace stress/wellbeing market, wearable technology and App market.