Redwood City, California-based online therapy portal Breakthrough Behavioral raised $5 million in their first round of funding, according to Venture Beat. The Social+Capital Partnership led the round and First Round Capital and Great Oaks Venture Capital also participated. Last August, Breakthrough raised $900,000 in angel funding, bringing their total to $5.9 million.
Breakthrough Behavioral offers mental patients a HIPAA-compliant alternative to in-person therapy sessions. According to the company's website, a patient might choose online care for many reasons, including the convenience of speaking to a professional from anywhere with internet access, reading profiles to find the therapist that's the best fit and maintaining the privacy that might be lost in the waiting room.
Patients can choose a licensed therapy professional based on video introductions and personal profiles on the site and schedule appointments with one of the therapists. Patients must search for a therapist by specialty, issue they wish to discuss, and location.
The service currently accepts Blue Shield of California, Magellan Health Services and Western Health Advantage in California, according to their blog, and is only open to residents of California.
Breakthrough cited a survey published last year of 98,609 patients enrolled in the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Telemental Health Services from 2006 to 2010. The survey compared the number of inpatient psychiatric admissions and days of psychiatric hospitalization for patients who participated in video conferencing. The results showed a 24.2% decrease in admission and 26.6% decrease in hospitalization days.