Mental health shops

Posted by Flux on 

4 April 2022

What’s trending?
The pandemic has increased anxiety, loneliness and depression hence we are starting to see a concomitant rise in mental wellness services. The latest trend is on-demand mental healthcare that focuses on everyday maintenance and preventative care. Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants in the US has partnered with Talkspace to offer free therapy to their guests where guests can claim a complimentary video therapy call with a licensed therapist. Self Space just opened a store to provide on-demand mental health care, allowing people to pop in for a session as they would for a haircut. California-based startup Coa opened its first mental health gym taking a fitness approach to emotional wellness. The ‘gym’ is currently online but they plan to open brick-and-mortar locations in major US cities. 

Why is it important?
According to a survey conducted by The New York Times and Psychology Today “9 out of 10 therapists say the number of clients seeking care is on the rise, and most are experiencing a significant surge in calls for appointments, longer waiting lists and difficulty meeting patient demand.” It’s becoming increasingly difficult to make appointments with therapists and on- demand mental health care addresses this hurdle. People are looking to maintain their own emotional wellbeing much like they would go to the gym for physical fitness. While there has been some headway made towards destigmatising mental help, a taboo still exists. Such on-demand services help to destigmatise mental health care.

What can businesses do about it?
Workplace stress reduces employee productivity, increases absenteeism and presenteeism, increases the number of days taken off work for doctor visits, and increases healthcare costs incurred by employers. It is also linked to higher accident and injury rates and higher turnover rates, both of which increase administrative costs. Therefore it’s in companies’ best interests to have initiatives in place for employees to attend to their emotional wellbeing. In addition to the Kimpton Hotel chain offering complementary therapy to their guests, they also offer this to their employees. Businesses can partner with companies such as Talkspace to offer on demand mental health care to their employees and offer some form of subsidy for this benefit. They could also set up such mental wellness centres within their office buildings.

By Faeeza Khan
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Image credit: Priscilla Du Preez

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