Calm Health and Mayo Clinic Collaborate to offer Cancer Patients Mental Health Service

by | Jun 23, 2023 | Digital Health

Promoting Mental Wellness for Cancer Patients through Innovative Collaboration

Calm Health, the renowned meditation app, has joined forces with the prestigious Mayo Clinic to develop digital mental health programs specifically tailored to help cancer patients cope with anxiety, depression, and overall mental well-being. Launched last year, Calm Health aims to address mental health concerns for employees, payers, and healthcare providers, offering a seamlessly integrated digital solution to monitor and manage patients’ mental well-being.

Through partnering with Mayo Clinic, Calm Health intends to create a comprehensive clinical mental health program for adult cancer patients. Leading the initiative is Dr. Andrea Wahner Hendrickson, an esteemed oncologist and researcher at Mayo Clinic, alongside Dr. Jennifer Kilkus, a psycho-oncology specialist and assistant clinical professor at Yale School of Medicine.

Recognizing the critical importance of prioritizing mental healthcare on par with physical care, Rhett Woods, the General Manager at Calm Health, emphasizes the need for transformational and effective mental health and mindfulness tools. These tools are aimed at supporting patients through the challenging emotional and physical journey of chronic conditions such as cancer.

Research from the past decade, highlighted by Calm Health, underscores the urgent necessity for mental health support among cancer patients. Studies estimate that up to one-third of patients receiving cancer treatment in hospitals experience common mental health conditions. Additionally, rates of major depressive disorder in individuals with cancer can be up to three times higher compared to the general population.

Calm Health’s existing offerings include programs designed in collaboration with its parent company, Calm, known for its engaging content. These programs, coupled with screening tools to guide users towards appropriate mental healthcare levels, comply with federal privacy standards. Moving forward, Calm Health intends to expand its mental health programs beyond cancer to encompass various diseases like diabetes, hypertension, and obesity.

The upcoming mental health program, expected to be completed in the third quarter of 2023, will be available to Calm Health customers and designed to cater to all adults with cancer. The company plans to roll out the program by the end of the year. Although Calm Health officially launched in October, it was formally established in early 2022 when Calm acquired Ripple Health Group, a health app maker, bringing Ripple CEO David Ko on board as co-CEO of the mental health unicorn.

The collaboration between Calm Health and Mayo Clinic comes at a crucial time when the demand for behavioral health services is surpassing the available supply of providers. The digital mental health market is poised to meet this demand, particularly in the wake of the stressors brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. Recent developments in the field include a $71 million funding round and $2.5 billion valuation for digital mental health benefits company Spring Health, as well as Apple’s increased support for mental health tracking within its Health app.

Meditation’s Positive Impact on Mental Health: A Study Reference

In a study conducted by Goyal et al. (2014), the researchers examined the effects of meditation on mental health outcomes. The meta-analysis included 47 trials involving a total of 3,515 participants. The results demonstrated that meditation programs had moderate evidence of improving anxiety symptoms, depression, and overall psychological well-being. Moreover, the study indicated that the benefits of meditation were particularly prominent in individuals with elevated levels of stress. This evidence highlights the potential of meditation as a valuable tool in promoting mental health and well-being, which aligns with the goals of Calm Health’s collaboration with Mayo Clinic.

Please note that the above study is provided as an example and may not directly relate to the specific mental health program being developed by Calm Health and Mayo Clinic.

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