Are there any online therapy startups

Online therapy succeeds in entering the statutory health insurance market

E-health startups can certainly succeed in gaining a foothold in the statutory health insurance market. When several offers from startups were presented at the BMC Congress, it became clear that the easiest way to go is through reimbursement as a statutory health insurance benefit. An example of this is the psychologically supported online therapy from the Berlin company Selfapy.

The startup was built with the aim of closing gaps in supply by bridging waiting times for a therapy place through online therapy, reported Farina Schurzfeld, founder of Selfapy at the BMC Congress.

"We do not want to replace psychotherapy, we want the waiting time for the patient not to be lost, that the inhibition threshold that still exists about consulting a psychotherapist is broken down, and we want to enable better aftercare through our offer," said Schurzfeld . The special thing about this offer: In addition to the online offer, patients at Selfapy speak to a psychologist once a week.

30 psychologists are now in the Selfapy team. The result is high stamina rates for online therapy of over 90 percent and a reduction in symptoms by 35 percent, which is comparable to classic psychotherapy.

The offer initially met with little response from the health insurance companies. But it was clear: "Without the support of the health insurers, we cannot reach the patients," explained Schurzfeld. With the help of Health Minister Jens Spahn, the Federal Insurance Office, which was initially blocking, was ultimately convinced.

In the meantime, 14 million people with statutory health insurance could be reimbursed for the costs of the service. The company also wants to address general practitioners in order to reach more patients. After all, 80 percent of psychological diagnoses are made in general practitioners' practices, said the startup founder. (ger)