Talkspace (formerly Talktala) is the company behind “Unlimited Messaging Therapy,” which was designed to enable patients to text with their professional, licensed therapist every day for a week or up to an entire year.
The company has announced a $2.5 million round of funding from Spark Capital, led by General Partner Alex Finkelstein, and SoftBank Capital, led by General Partner Jordan Levy. As part of the deal, AOL President of Video Ran Harnevo will join the board.
According to Talkspace co-founder and CEO Oren Frank, 50 million Americans are being referred to a therapist every year, but less than one-third are receiving the help they need, which is “simply insane.”
“There is no question that when it comes to mental health, the general public is grossly underserved,” said Finkelstein. “Talkspace offers a refreshing, modern-day solution to an old problem by allowing patients on-demand access to leading therapists through their mobile device or PC.”
The company currently reaches 50,000 patients and is growing rapidly. Patients can write as much as they want from their computers, iPhones or iPads to a professional therapist. They are allowed to remain anonymous, which makes it easier to overcome the stigma that causes shame in many cases.
The recently launched iPhone app complements the current Web and text message-based services, all of which allow for affordable, daily access to on-demand care.