Thursday, August 27, 2020

Advantages of Wellness Technologies as Employee Benefits

Corporate executive Mark Hirschhorn joined the teletherapy app company Talkspace early in 2020. Mark Hirschhorn serves as the firm’s president and chief operating officer.

In addition to connecting individuals to immediate counseling with licensed therapists, Talkspace offers a suite of mental health and wellness services suitable for employee assistance programs (EAPs). EAPs are benefits that companies may offer their workers to help them with non-work-related issues.

Traditional EAPs include discounts on in-person counseling, fitness programs, and other health and wellness-focused initiatives. In recent years, many of the offerings commonly included in an EAP are available on app-based or web-based platforms. Companies can bundle access to subscription wellness apps and provide them to employees as a benefit.

Since these benefits can be accessed with the privacy of a personal device, employees are more likely to engage in digital counseling. Further, apps that focus on health and fitness can easily collect anonymous data that can help companies determine which wellness initiatives are the most successful. These apps can also simplify the coordination of interactive fitness challenges, such as maintaining workout streaks or participating as a team to reach 100,000 steps per day. 

Thursday, August 20, 2020

RACE Act to Boost Innovation in Pediatric Cancer Research

Formerly named the best small-sized healthcare company CFO, Mark Hirschhorn serves as the president and COO of teletherapy company Talkspace. Mark Hirschhorn has also contributed to numerous health-related nonprofit organizations, including the Pediatric Cancer Foundation (PCF).

According to the PCF, less than 4 percent of dedicated federal funding goes toward pediatric cancer research. To improve this number, the Research to Accelerate Cures and Equity (RACE) for Children Act was passed in 2017. As of early August 2020, companies that develop therapies and drugs for adult cancers must also investigate the treatments’ effectiveness and safety for children.

Before this legislation, many cancer drug companies would bypass clinical trials for pediatric cancers because of a combination of a smaller market and clinical trials for children. The RACE Act limits the drugs exempted from this extra research. The act will spur more innovation in pediatric cancer treatment, which historically has lagged behind advances in the treatment of adult cancers.

Saturday, August 8, 2020

40 Million Americans Are Covered by Insurance for Talkspace Services

With this partnership, the number of individuals in the United States with health insurance coverage to use Talkspace now exceeds 40 million. The Cigna partnership allows its insurance customers to use live video or messaging sessions with Talkspace therapists for the same cost as traditional, in-person visits.

The COVID-19 pandemic has acutely increased the need for access to behavioral health service. Talkspace recorded a 70 percent increase in clients between March and April of 2020. Additional partnerships with insurance carriers like Cigna help ensure people can access services from virtually anywhere in the county at an affordable rate. Other carriers that have made arrangements with Talkspace include Optum, Humana, and Premara Blue Cross Blue Shield.