The good news keeps coming for therapy provider Talkspace. Billed as “therapy on your cell phone,” Talkspace has turned quite a few heads in recent months with CEO Oren Frank’s announcement that Neil Leibowitz has signed on as Chief Medical Officer.
Coming from New York’s United Healthcare, Leibowitz begins his tenure at Talkspace with nearly two decades of experience in his portfolio. An expert in bioethics who steps into his new role at Talkspace with both medical and law credentials, Leibowitz is anxious to help the expanding organization bring high-quality care to a robust and diverse clientele. “I’m excited that Talkspace is changing the treatment paradigm and meeting patients where they want to be, rather than having the expectation that the patient will meet the provider only on the provider’s terms,” notes Leibowitz in an interview with PR Newswire. Leibowitz was officially welcomed to the Talkspace team in April 2018.
Leibowitz’s arrival coincides with an uptick in Talkspace’s client base, a trend that coincides with Talkspace’s engagement with Employee Assistance Programs (EAPs). A collaboration with Magellan Health, for example, brings Talkspace’s evidence-based care to an expanded list of clients who may have shied away from therapy in the past, according to PR Newswire. Leibowitz’s reputation as a relationship builder on the insurance side of medicine also bodes well for his new company, as Talkspace is poised to expand and deepen its position with corporations.
Oren Frank, founder and CEO of Talkspace, appreciates the value Leibowitz brings to the business. As noted in a CNBC report filed after Leibowitz’s hiring, Leibowitz could enact Frank’s vision of expanding the corporate side of the business. Like many other therapy providers with a broad client base, Talkspace understands that one frontier for therapy providers focuses on engagement with employee-assistance programs. This is, of course, a win for employers. Providing high-quality therapeutic services to employees improves employee morale and corporate productivity. Given the accessibility of the Talkspace platform, employees who may not have accessed EAP services in the past can now receive support with a few taps on a smartphone.
From Skeptic to Champion
As noted by many news outlets, Neil Leibowitz was initially no fan of online providers like his new employer. Although Leibowitz was “initially skeptical” about Talkspace, according to PR Newswire, he now views the company “as a way to increase access to therapists.” Concerned that many individuals in dire need of therapeutic services refrain from seeking help because of stigma and lack of access, Leibowitz realized that online providers bridge the gap for a broader clientele, providing new options and opportunities to those who previously suffered in silence.
One of the great innovations Leibowitz is championing in the Talkspace community is the addition of psychiatric services that will facilitate the dissemination of prescription medicine to clients who may need this level of support. This initiative is certainly groundbreaking for Talkspace and deeply appreciated by the company’s growing number of clients. For an even larger segment of the population who have refrained from seeking appropriate care because of a host of accessibility issues, access to comprehensive psychiatric treatment means a potential increase in quality of life.
Leibowitz also sees Talkspace’s approach to psychiatric care as an affordable option for members of the population who have contended with cost prohibition in the past. Talkspace makes therapy accessible and affordable for anyone with an internet connection. Leibowitz told PR Newswire that this played a major role in his decision to join the company because “access to mental health workers for people in rural areas is a well-documented problem.”
Indeed, it’s a new day at Talkspace. Additional services and the addition of visionaries like Neil Leibowitz mean a bright future for the therapy provider. Talkspace offers access, value, and excellent services to many who have refrained from therapeutic support in the past.