No matter what you think of the American Healthcare System, it remains a vital piece of the sustainable health and wellness puzzle in this country today. Only recently, has the importance of mental health care and services become part of the national conversation.
According to a recent article in the San Diego Union-Tribune, “In the United States, about 45 million adults have a mental illness such as anxiety or depression — that’s nearly 1 in 6 adults. Among these adults, a 2016 study found that 60 percent didn’t get treatment during the previous year: no medication, no talk therapy, no support groups.”
Enter stage left, innovator and local tech entrepreneur Spencer Hutchins. Seeing the need for a more collaborative care philosophy, Hutchins founded Concert Health on the idea of fixing a broken healthcare system. The technology platform makes it easier for doctors to connect patients with therapists and mental health care providers. In my opinion, Concert Health is doing more than just helping doctors, they are saving lives!
I sat down with Hutchins to discuss Concert Health and how Downtown Works has helped him during his entrepreneurial journey…
- Tell us a little bit about yourself?
I am a health-tech nut. In the last 6 years, I’ve been starting and running companies. Prior to that, I spent time at a family office, as a management consultant and a couple of stints in public service; most recently at the FCC in the first term of the Obama administration. I’ve got two young sons, so any time I’m not working to re-architect America’s behavioral health system, I’m mostly losing wrestling battles or putting together Lego sets.
- Where did you come up with your original idea or concept for your business?
The genesis of Concert came during a program called 10.10.10 in Denver, where I was exposed to a powerful, research-backed model of integrating behavioral health and primary care called Collaborative Care Management. Then it really got going when I met my co-founder, Virna Little.
- What services and or products do you offer?
Concert Health is a behavioral health medical group. We have about 50 licensed mental health professionals and Psychiatric Consultants, working remotely across four states. We deliver behavioral health services in partnership with primary care physicians – helping people receive support for their whole self from one team. We work in Southern California, Arizona, New York, and Connecticut.
- What were some of your struggles and barriers to market entry and how did you go about overcoming them?
Navigating the US HealthCare System was tough. I leaned heavily on our team-based approach and having subject matter experts. It is great having knowledgeable people surrounding you to help answer specific questions.
- How has being a member of Downtown Works helped you grow your business?
The simplicity allows me to focus on my business and my team instead of office logistics. The space lets us “present” as bigger and more established when we have visits come to the office.
- What is one piece of advice you would give someone just starting their business?
Be obsessive about what value you are creating for the customer. It’s gotten in vogue to say you’re working for a ‘start-up’ — but laser focus on getting someone to pay you to solve a problem (and then being happy they did) is normally the right place to start.
Where can readers find you online?
LinkedIn: Concert Health
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