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Free telehealth tool launched to support Kiwis and doctors’ mental health during COVID-19

A mobile phone screenshot of the Clearhead tool
A mobile phone screenshot of the Clearhead tool

In the months since the COVID-19 pandemic began, mental health service providers and call centres have recorded an unprecedented demand in their services. Clearhead has also recorded a spike in several thousands of users of their platform in the last month of May.

At the same time, mental health providers have been facing their own challenges since social distancing restrictions were enforced, with many impacted by the challenges or costs associated with having to use multiple third-party digital tools to continue to provide their services via telehealth.

It’s why we’ve teamed up with nib to partner with innovative local digital mental health company, Clearhead , to expand its online platform to include a secure, online telehealth service, which will enable therapists and support groups to continue to deliver crucial mental health services to more Kiwis across the country, even under COVID-19 restrictions.

The $60,000 in funding will allow providers to use the telehealth service at no cost, during COVID-19. In addition, Clearhead has also partnered with a group of mental health professionals to offer a series of weekly online facilitated peer support groups – thought to be the first of its kind in New Zealand - for doctors dealing with the pressures of the pandemic.

Through increased accessibility to mental health and wellbeing tools and resources, we hope to reduce the barriers our New Zealand community are facing when accessing mental health support during COVID-19 restrictions and enable more people to seek proactive help from the comfort of their own home. The aim is to help prevent immediate and lasting mental health impacts and maintain the mental resilience of mental health professionals who have been under increased pressure due to the pandemic.

The expansion of the Clearhead platform is expected to help facilitate more than 1,000 one-on-one therapy sessions over the coming months and users can also access the platform to get personalised recommendations through its AI chatbot. Clearhead also offers a national directory of therapists based on their real-time availability. All information is kept confidential and secure and is not provided to third parties.

This funding provided by nib and nib foundation is a part of nib’s COVID-19 member and community support package and $1 million commitment to ensuring communities across Australia and New Zealand are supported during the COVID-19 pandemic.