After reorganizing its health division, Google has made a new hire with the addition of Megan Jones Bell as its clinical director of consumer and mental health. The tech giant made the announcement in a press release Tuesday, with Bell assuming her new role this week.
Bell arrives at Google from Headspace Health, where she was the chief strategy and science officer for the virtual mental health platform. Bell joined Headspace Health’s predecessor company, Headspace, in 2017, where she initially served as chief science officer.
Bell had been with the company most recently through the August announcement of its planned merger with mental wellness platform Ginger. The deal officially closed October 14, with the newly combined company renamed Headspace Health.
A clinical psychologist by training, Bell has previously been an assistant professor at Stanford University and is a current fellow at the Aspen Institute. At Google, Bell will lead a team of clinicians and health experts that provide support to the company’s consumer products. Bell has also previously been a mental health advisor for the company.
Bell will report to Karen DeSalvo, who is the chief health officer for Google. DeSalvo’s Google Health team supports company-wide efforts that include the properties of Google Search, Maps, YouTube, Fitbit, Cloud and its health artificial intelligence research.
Google has also developed clinically validated screeners for depression, post-traumatic stress disorder and post-partum depression. Last year, the company partnered with the National Association for Mental Illness for a screening tool that included medically validated information about anxiety, including symptoms and treatments. In recent years, Google has launched the Recover Together website as a treatment guidance resource for individuals battling substance use disorder.
Last year, Google announced that it was disbanding its unified health division and dispersing its health-focused initiatives across several divisions of the company. Around that time, Google Health chief David Feinberg left his post to become the president and CEO of health IT company Cerner.