The World Health Organization recently reported that the Covid-19 pandemic triggered a 25% increase in the prevalence of anxiety and depression worldwide, exacerbating what was already a dramatic mental health crisis. Issues related to accessibility, affordability and stigma have long characterized the mental healthcare landscape across America, even pre-pandemic. While Covid-19 acted as a catalyst to spur many Americans to finally begin seeking much-needed mental health support, the escalating need for therapy and psychiatric services unfortunately made the dramatic imbalance between the supply of, versus the demand for, mental health resources even more acute.
Teletherapy and telepsychiatry platforms startups soared over the past few years, driven by the high volume of patients desperate to connect with providers who could meet with them from the safety of home, and without the additional burden of long, roundtrip travel to each appointment. Yet many companies in this space have still failed patients considerably by delivering sub-par care, relying increasingly on unlicensed professionals, eschewing insurance coverage, and confusing patients with mysterious billing practices (most notably, those delivering mental healthcare via subscription models).
It was important to the team at Volition Capital to get involved in the mental healthcare industry, given our commitment to investing behind core consumer services, yet equally as important was partnering with a company that cares deeply for its patients and providers. We were explicitly searching for a business committed to doing things differently when we met the management team of Sensible Care.
Meet sensible care
We are proud to introduce Sensible Care, an exceptional business in the teletherapy and telepsychiatry space. Our journey with Sensible Care began upon meeting CEO & Founder, Paul Kim, and learning his personal story, which led to the founding of the company. After serving in the U.S. military, Kim began working in a psychiatry practice, simultaneously developing an appreciation for the inefficiencies of traditional behavioral healthcare practices, as well as the struggles of active-duty and veteran members of the military to connect with critical mental healthcare services.
From its earliest days, Sensible Care has focused on solving both issues: building robust, tech-driven solutions to enhance mental healthcare delivery from the provider and back-office perspective, and prioritizing insurance coverage, beginning with the Department of Defense’s Tricare insurance network, in order to deliver truly accessible, affordable care. Despite its impressive growth over the past few years, quality of care has always remained core to the Sensible Care mission – a north star that the Volition team was able to validate through patient survey work, which revealed the fact that 98% of Sensible Care patients were satisfied with their care.
So, why did volition invest in sensible care?
We are believers in the idea that building a better customer experience often requires getting “a thousand little things” right. But, to summarize the core pillars that we believe differentiates Sensible Care from the many other players in the teletherapy market:
- Insurance-Led Accessibility: For the majority of Americans, accessible mental healthcare begins with affordability due to insurance coverage. Unlike other players that have built subscription-style, cash-pay teletherapy businesses, Sensible Care delivers mental healthcare in a way that patients can understand, and afford – with per-session pricing, and insurance coverage for most. Appointment availability is another priority for Sensible Care, mitigating the common issue of a patient finding that a provider may not have the capacity to take on new cases, and can only offer a months-long waitlist.
- Highest Quality of Care: Sensible Care has been built from the ground-up to provide the highest possible quality of mental healthcare, building its clinical model around a commitment to provider continuity and the use of licensed and specialized clinicians. The Sensible Care team is equipped to appropriately manage complex mental illness cases, as well as support patients looking for a specific type of expertise – including the delivery of mental health services to minorities, the LGBTQ+ community, non-English speakers, active duty military members and their families, kids, and other groups requiring specific, culturally competent care.
- Provider-Centric Culture: Quality of care starts with the ability to attract and retain the highest-caliber providers, which requires real attention to the provider experience. The focus on the provider at Sensible Care is tangible – and allows the business to deliver on the best care experience for its patients. Mitigating provider burnout is always a part of the conversation at Sensible Care, and is tackled head-on via strategies like dedicated case management hours and scheduled provider case collaboration sessions. Attracting the best clinicians also safeguards the business by ensuring that appropriate protocols are used in all clinical decision-making.
We are proud to back Sensible Care at a time when safe, trusted, accessible and affordable teletherapy and telepsychiatry platforms are more needed than ever. While the business is only operating in California at this time, working together with CEO & Founder Paul Kim, and others on Sensible Care’s leadership team, we are excited to scale the high-quality care provided by Sensible Care to reach additional patients, providers, and geographies in the months and years ahead.