Thursday, December 1, 2022

Options MD raises $2.35M to expand virtual care for severe depression

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Options MD, a telehealth startup focused on severe depression, scooped up $2.35 million in a pre-seed funding round led by Bread & Butter Ventures.

Others participating in the raise include M13, Bright Ventures and Collab Capital alongside returning investors MedMountain Ventures and Techstars. 

The startup has also received $100,000 from the Google for Startups Latino Founders Fund. The latest raise brings Options MD’s total pre-seed funding to nearly $4 million.

WHAT THEY DO

Options MD is currently focused on providing virtual care for treatment-resistant depression, when a patient’s symptoms don’t improve after trying two different types of antidepressants. 

Patients first fill out a screening form about their depression, lifestyle and overall health to be accepted with Options MD. They can then participate in an intake session with a psychiatrist and access new treatments, which can range from talk therapy and new medications to transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) and ketamine

The startup said it plans to use the funding from the pre-seed round to expand its clinical operations and research as well as improve its proprietary clinical protocols.

“Instead of being incentivized to only offer one or two treatments, at Options MD, we believe care should be comprehensive and personalized,” Morgan Hewett, cofounder of Options MD, said in a statement. “Through our virtual platform, we are nurturing one of the country’s largest communities for treatment-resistant depression. We are focused on providing high-touch, high-quality care for this historically difficult-to-treat patient population.”

MARKET SNAPSHOT

Although digital health funding has slumped this year compared with the massive investment seen in 2021, mental health continues to be a leading therapeutic area. According to a report by Rock Health, digital mental health companies have brought in $1.7 billion so far in 2022, and more startups are focusing on complex mental illnesses.

Another company that aims to manage patients with severe mental illness is Valera Health, which this week announced it had raised $44.5 million in growth equity financing.

Other startups offering virtual psychiatric care include Sensible Care, Iris Telehealth and Talkiatry.



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