About three in five employees experienced negative impacts from work-related stress in 2021. Yet, half of workers aren’t able to access support, or don’t know of mental health resources within their company.
Care navigation company Accolade is working to change this by expanding its mental health services through a partnership with Lyra Healtha provider of workplace mental health benefits. Burlingame, California-based Lyra provides in-person and virtual access to therapists, and also offers digital lessons and exercises to manage stress. The announcement Tuesday brings Lyra Health to Seattle, Washington-based Accolade’s Trusted Partner Ecosystem.
The Trusted Partner Ecosystem is a collection of health vendors vetted by Accolade that its customers — employers — can choose to contract with. The ecosystem includes Virta Health for diabetes care, Carrot Fertility for fertility treatment and Hinge Health for musculoskeletal care. For behavioral health care, Lyra Health is joining Headspace Health in Accolade’s ecosystem. There are 14 vendors total in the ecosystem.
“With Lyra, we were super impressed by the comprehensiveness of their model,” said Kristen Weeks, senior vice president of strategy, corporate development and partnerships at Accolade. “We actually had a number of customers who already had them in place who really endorsed what they were doing for their populations.”
Despite already having a mental health solution with Headspace Health in the ecosystem, Accolade wanted to provide its customers with more options, Weeks added.
“We want to have quality over quantity, but we wanted to provide optionality to our customers,” she said. “Different things resonate with different customers, so we don’t want them to feel restricted in what’s available to them.”
When Accolade vets companies to add to its ecosystem, it considers several criteria, Weeks said. The company must have a strong clinical model with accurate and credible outcomes data. Accolade also assesses the company’s data security, as well as its financial health. Lastly it considers the company’s scalability and if it’s able to meet the demands of customers across the country. The purpose of the ecosystem is to simplify the process for choosing vendors to work with at a time when many are battling point solution fatigue, according to Weeks.
“These vendors are calling on our employer customers nonstop and many of them actually have really useful solutions to promote,” she said. “It’s just really difficult for customers to separate the grain from the chaff and to make time really to kind of vet and have a perspective on the industry. We’re trying to solve for that in one way by really identifying those best-in-class solutions.”
When an employer chooses to work with a company in Accolade’s ecosystem, the vendor and Accolade share the revenue from the employer, according to Weeks.
A recent survey from Lyra Health showed that employees are in desperate need of more mental health support. Nearly 90% of employees said they’ve experienced at least one mental health concern in the last year, but only 33% said they received help.
“The workplace has become a frontline for this mental health crisis and employers are uniquely positioned to help solve this crisis,” said Jim Conway, assistant vice president of channels and health plans at Lyra.
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