What You Should Know:
– Washington, D.C.-based Hurdle raises $5M in seed funding to accelerate its digital mental health platform for people of color.
– Hurdle aims to provide an innovative teletherapy solution for employers and insurers; aims to remove barriers to mental health care for People of Color by rooting its services in evidence-based methods of cultural humility.
Hurdle (formerly Henry Health), a Washington, D.C.-based innovative digital mental health platform company, announced today it has successfully closed $5 million in seed funding co-led by 406 Ventures and Seae Ventures with participation from F-Prime. Hurdle leverages technology to cultivate a virtual safe space with culturally intentional content and services that support self-mastery and well-being.
Powering Culturally Responsive Mental Health Care Services
According to the American Psychiatric Association, African Americans often receive poorer quality of care and lack access to culturally competent care. Only one-in-three African Americans who need mental health care receive it. Hurdle was founded in 2018 by public health leader Kevin Dedher, MPH after having suffered his own period of depression where he found the biggest challenge and barrier to effective care was finding the right therapist who could truly understand and connect with his life as an African-American.
To tackle these challenges, Hurdle’s digital mental health platform revolutionizes mental health care for People of Color by creating an equitable behavioral health service with culturally responsive care and resources. Hurdle uses a proprietary scientifically validated tool developed by Dr. Norma Day-Vine, Johns Hopkins professor of Counseling and Human Development to measure cultural responsiveness and provide appropriate training and coaching for its therapists. Research shows that therapists whose patients perceive them as having Cultural Humility deliver meaningfully improved outcomes.
“With depression spiking in Black and minority communities, this year is an inflection point in mental healthcare. The events of 2020 present a unique opportunity for Hurdle to create solutions that work for anyone, but most importantly, for the most underserved populations,” says Kevin Dedner, Founder and CEO of Hurdle. “With this financing, Hurdle will significantly expand its reach and be able to help corporate and payer customers cement their Diversity & Inclusion commitments by providing broader access to culturally-responsive mental health services.”
Hurdle’s suite of services includes:
– Self-care digital apps (daily motivations, mediations, assessments);
– Wellness workshops (managing stress, cultivating resilience, coping with grief)
– Teletherapy (individual, couples and group therapy).
Funding Will Expand Platform to Insurers and Large Employers
Hurdle will use the new capital to strategically scale its evidence-based and tech-enabled platform, designed to support culturally diverse populations’ behavioral health needs. In addition, the company plans to expand its leadership team and solidify its position as the Gold Standard for Culturally Sensitive Teletherapy.
Hurdle currently accepts Aetna, BlueCross BlueShield, CareFirst, Cigna, Medicare, United Healthcare, and Optum-United Health Group/Optum Behavior Health. As Hurdle builds operational scale, it will offer its platform directly to more insurers and large employers.