Ginger, the leader in on-demand behavioral health, today announced a $35 million Series C funding round led by WP Global Partners. Additional participants include impact fund City Light Capital, Nimble Ventures, LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner, as well as existing investors Khosla Ventures, Kaiser Permanente Ventures, and Kapor Capital. This latest round of investment brings the company’s total funding to $63 million, enabling Ginger to accelerate its investments in data science and clinical services. Over the next 24 months, Ginger plans to bring its unique care delivery model to more people around the world, including members of health plans and other risk-bearing organizations.
Nearly 1 in 5 Americans have a mental health condition1; yet half of the counties in the U.S. do not have adequate mental health providers to meet demand2. Ginger’s on-demand, collaborative model scales to meet this need by bringing text-based behavioral health coaching, video therapy and video psychiatry under one virtual roof. Insights generated by Ginger’s artificial intelligence technology enables the company to deliver the right level of care to members when they need it.
“As the global mental health crisis intensifies and access challenges increase, employers are searching for solutions to address the shortage of affordable, available providers,” said Russell Glass, CEO of Ginger. “In building the world’s first virtual behavioral health system, we are reinventing the approach with instant access to care. This latest round of funding accelerates our ability to expand high-quality care—any time of day or night—to millions of people around the world.”
Ginger members access care through the Ginger app, available on Android and iOS, where they can text instantly, in real-time with a trained behavioral health coach 24/7, 365 days a year. For members who need additional support, video therapy and psychiatry sessions can be easily and quickly scheduled in-app. Over 70 percent of members surveyed using Ginger reported a significant reduction in symptoms of depression within 12 weeks—twice as effective as the leading collaborative care study.
According to Ginger’s 2019 Workforce Attitudes Towards Behavioral Health Report, nearly 50 percent of U.S. workers reported missing an average of four or more work days during the last 12 months due to stress, translating to at least $30 billion in lost productivity. Currently, Ginger is offered as an employer-sponsored benefit to more than 200,000 employees around the world, with that number on track to more than double by the end of 2019. Ginger’s clients range from small, privately-owned companies to Fortune 100 employers. The company has generated significant momentum within key industry verticals such as professional services, technology, and media and entertainment. Ginger has also expanded its international presence, where the global economic costs of mental disorders are estimated to be $2.5 trillion.
- Global coaching capabilities: Ginger can now deliver its coaching services in 19 countries around the world including Canada, the UK, Japan, Australia, and India.
- Rapid employer uptake: One quarter (25 percent) of Ginger’s clients, including BuzzFeed and Pinterest, have deployed Ginger’s coaching services to employees based outside of the U.S., and 15 percent of Ginger members are located outside of the U.S.
“We have significant experience investing in healthcare and believe that technology is the key to solving the global mental health crisis,” said Donald Phillips, Chairman and CEO of WP Global Partners. “As we looked to expand our portfolio, it became clear to us that there is no other company in the world that provides emotional and mental health support as quickly and effectively as Ginger does.”
New product enhancements scale on-demand care on member’s terms
In the U.S., those seeking mental health care wait an average of 25 days for a first visit with a psychiatrist3. A recent survey commissioned by Ginger and conducted online by The Harris Poll among more than 2,000 Americans ages 18+, revealed that two-thirds of Americans (66 percent) say if they were struggling with stress or life challenges, they would prefer to text immediately with a certified mental health coach who is trained to provide support if given the choice, versus waiting three weeks to meet with a licensed therapist in person. Ginger members are able to chat with a coach within seconds.
For members who aren’t immediately ready for a text-based coaching conversation, a new scheduling feature within the Ginger app allows members to chat at a time that works best with their schedules. After rolling out this feature in early 2019, Ginger found that:
- Nearly 50 percent of scheduled coaching sessions happen at the end of the workday or after work hours.
- While the majority of Ginger members’ needs are met with coaching alone, 8 percent of them require an escalated level of care. Ginger’s database and systems continuously learn so that only clinicians who can accept an appointment within a 72-hour timeframe are offered to those in need.
The company has also launched three AI-enabled product features within Coach Hub, Ginger’s proprietary coaching platform, that help the company maintain the fastest time-to-service standard in the behavioral health industry.
- Real-time signals: Ginger’s behavioral health coaches can now provide real-time input on their caseload within the Hub, allowing the system to dynamically distribute new member conversations and reduce response times.
- Smart inbox: A new task prioritization feature helps Ginger’s coaches understand who to chat with next by prioritizing tasks and recommending actions. This helps to scale care by relieving significant mental burden on coaches.
- Member satisfaction flags: Ginger members can score every coaching conversation on a scale of 1 – 5, right within the app. Scores of three or below are automatically flagged and instantly addressed by Ginger’s Member Support team.
Ginger offers on-demand behavioral healthcare to people in need of emotional and mental health support. As a virtual behavioral healthcare system, Ginger utilizes proprietary AI and machine learning to deliver its members access to high-quality emotional and mental health support within seconds. Through its partnerships with leading employers such as BuzzFeed, Sephora, and Pinterest, hundreds of thousands of people have access to Ginger’s coaching, therapy and psychiatry services. The Ginger app, available on Android and iOS, provides members with instant access to live coach chat 24/7, 365 days a year. For members who need additional support, video therapy and psychiatry sessions can be easily and quickly scheduled through the app. The World Economic Forum has identified Ginger’s AI technology as a Technology Pioneer, and the company was recognized as one of the top 10 Most Innovative Companies in Healthcare by Fast Company. Find out more about how employees get instant access to complete care at ginger.io, or connect with us on LinkedIn and Twitter.
1 NIMH, Any Mental Illness Among Adults. Retrieved May 1, 2019, from https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/statistics/mental-illness.shtml#part_154785
2 AAMC, Addressing the escalating psychiatrist shortage, Retrieved Feb 13, 2018 from https://news.aamc.org/patient-care/article/addressing-escalating-psychiatrist-shortage/
3 Psychiatry Advisor, Long Wait Times Typical for Psychiatry Appointments, Retrieved October 16, 2014 from https://www.psychiatryadvisor.com/home/practice-management/long-wait-times-typical-for-psychiatry-appointments/