Livongo adds behavioral health tools for new, expecting parents

The new content is personalized for users whether they be single parents, same-sex couple or adopting couples.
By Jonah Comstock
09:17 am
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Livongo’s acquisition last year of myStrength is bearing its first fruits, as the company announced today a new suite of behavioral health tools aimed at tackling the range of experiences that can come with pregnancy and early parenthood.

Through a mobile or web app, the program provides users with a range of resources and activities including guided meditations, quizzes and videos based on cognitive behavioral therapy, mindfulness, relaxation and behavioral activation.

It’s the same approach as myStrength’s other offerings, offered by Livongo under the umbrella of Livongo for Behavioral Health, which are already available for depression, anxiety, stress, substance use disorders (including opioid recovery), chronic pain, balancing intense emotions, mindfulness and meditation, and sleep.

In the case of the Pregnancy and Early Parenting offerings, the content is personalized to different kinds of families including single parents, same-sex couples and adopting couples.

WHY IT MATTERS

Perinatal mood disorders like postpartum depression affect as many as 20% of new mothers, with as many as 70% experiencing some negative feelings or mood swings, according to the American Pregnancy Association and Postpartum Support International.

These behavioral health conditions, while common, have long been stigmatized, which can compound the problem and keep those affected from seeking help. Given that, it’s an area where a digital tool could be especially helpful.

WHAT’S THE TREND

Livongo acquired myStrength in January for north of $10 million (the exact figure is likely to come out when the company files its much-anticipated IPO). The move speaks to an increasing recognition of the fact that chronic conditions — Livongo’s core area — often go hand in hand with behavioral health challenges, and it’s important to manage both.

ON THE RECORD

“Parents undergo a period of transition during pregnancy and new parenthood which can affect behavioral and physical health along with impacting the entire family ecosystem,” Scott Cousino, Livongo’s SVP of behavioral health, said in a statement. “Engaging individuals at a time when they can best use additional insights and tools is crucial. Our personalized digital support resources are interactive and work with the member to access the exact support they need, while improving outcomes and reducing the cost of care delivery.”

Focus on Patient Experience

In May, we'll talk to the thought leaders and first-movers reimagining how and where — Hint: outside their perimeter — and report on how they're to activate if not delight the people they treat.

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