Virtual Reality for the Treatment of Schizophrenia
Play • 57 min

Virtual reality has moved beyond gaming and is an emerging technology in the treatment of schizophrenia and potentially in shaping the portrayal of this mental health condition for younger generations.

Host Rachel Star Withers, a person living with schizophrenia, and cohost Gabe Howard explore how virtual reality technologies are used to help people with schizophrenia.

Deepak Gopalakrishna, the founder and CEO of virtual reality therapy platform Rey, joins to share how Rey is revolutionizing exposure therapy for people with anxiety, PTSD, depression, and schizophrenia.

And later in the show, Barry Gene Murphy and May Abdalla, the producers of “Goliath: Playing with Reality,” share the inspiration behind their new award-winning virtual reality movie. “Goliath: Playing with Reality” is the true story of a man’s experience with schizophrenia, and is narrated by Academy Award winner Tilda Swinton.

To Learn more or read the transcript, visit the official episode page here.

Guest Bios

Deepak Gopalakrishna, the founder and CEO of Rey, is a highly accomplished customer-centric innovator. A seasoned entrepreneur with deep expertise in healthcare, AI, blockchain and digital innovation, he has founded and led the growth of seven companies.

With an MBA and a doctorate in genetics and Molecular biology, Deepak has the unique ability to merge the rigor of a scientist with the creativity of an entrepreneur. The vision for Rey was born: Take the best mental health clinicians in the world and transfer their methodologies into user-friendly automated digital treatments. You can find out more at

May Abdalla, the co-director, writer, and executive producer of “Goliath: Playing with Reality,” is an experimental documentary filmmaker who has won numerous awards for her work in the immersive and interactive arts. She founded the production company Anagram in 2013 to explore immersive technologies, especially in the documentary genre.

Barry Gene Murphy, the director and writer of “Goliath: Playing with Reality,” is an award-winning filmmaker and artist with over 15 years’ experience in animation, 3D and special effects, and more recently in mixed-reality works.

Goliath: Playing with Reality is Available to download for FREE on Oculus now:




Inside Schizophrenia Podcast Host

Rachel Star Withers creates videos documenting her schizophrenia, ways to manage and let others like her know they are not alone and can still live an amazing life. She has written Lil Broken Star: Understanding Schizophrenia for Kids and a tool for schizophrenics, To See in the Dark: Hallucination and Delusion Journal. Fun Fact: She has wrestled alligators.

To learn more about Rachel, please visit her website,

Inside Schizophrenia Co-Host

Gabe Howard is an award-winning writer and speaker who lives with bipolar disorder. He is the author of the popular book, "Mental Illness is an Asshole and other Observations," available from Amazon; signed copies are also available directly from the author.

Gabe makes his home in the suburbs of Columbus, Ohio. He lives with his supportive wife, Kendall, and a Miniature Schnauzer dog that he never wanted, but now can’t imagine life without. To learn more about Gabe, please visit his website,

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