Americans Say Mental Healthcare is Failing

Americans feel left in the dark.

The latest: A Gallup survey shows the majority believe mental health problems are spreading, but treatment isn’t.

  • 57% grade the US mental healthcare system a D or F.
  • 38% say mental health is treated worse than physical.

When it’s accessible, most think therapy beats prescriptions — but over half cite affordability as a barrier, while 42% say finding a provider is hard.

Headway. From 2019–22, the number of adults seeking mental health services spiked ~40%. But, as more seek therapy for relatively minor afflictions, demand is outpacing supply.

Scaling up, companies are hoping to reach those most in need.

  • Specializing in serious mental illness, hybrid providers Lightfully and Amae both secured funding this year.
  • Expanding teletherapy to Medicare/Medicaid patients, Brightside raised $33M in March, and Grow Therapy added $88M in April.
  • Increasing in-network specialty care options, Talkspace announced new partnerships with Charlie Health, Ria Health, and Bicycle Health.
  • Leveraging tech for better therapist matches, Two Chairs raised $72M last month.

Working toward a full-spectrum solution, Headspace added chat-based mental health coaching to its meditation app, with plans for DTC therapy later this year.

Punchline: Americans are more in tune with their mental state than ever. A double-edged sword, greater self-awareness is dissolving stigma, but mild anxieties are being pathologized — fueling outsized demand for treatment.

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