Telehealth companies expand mental health offerings

Telemedicine

Telemedicine companies are growing their offerings in the field of mental health services, according to a Forbes post.

Teladoc, for one, late last year began its growth of behavioral health programs, launching a business-to-business initiative that covers 6000 employers and health plans, according to the article. In addition, it has about 10,000 subscribers to its consumer behavioral health services.

Behavioral Health President Julian Cohen told the publication that “if you look at today’s market and the proliferation of technology becoming commonplace, it’s a natural extension for telebehavioral services to fill the gaps in access to quality behavioral health services.”

American Well also is expanding it services, and will offer a telepsychiatry program next month, with sites set on having the service operating in seven states by August.

“Behavioral healthcare is in desperate need of real solutions and we believe that ‘telemental’ health can bridge that gap,” Zereana Jess-Huff, vice president of behavioral health at American Well, told Forbes.

In addition, MDLive’s subsidiary, Breakthrough, in partnership with Walgreens, is providing customers with access to therapists and psychiatrists.

However, even as these major telemedicine players push further into healthcare, the veracity of their services may continue to come into question. A recent study published in JAMA Internal Medicine found that the quality of urgent care treatment varies widely among commercial providers of virtual doctor visits.

In addition, while telemental health helps to bridge the gaps that exist in providing mental health services to patients, there are many barriers to providing such services.

To learn more:
- here's the Forbes post