‘We’re Full-Steam Ahead’: Digital Mental Health Pioneer Array Plans Next Move After $25M Raise

Despite the economic uncertainties hitting digital health, it’s been full-steam ahead for telepsychiatry provider Array Behavioral Health.

The New Jersey-based provider kicked off 2023 with a $25 million funding round led by CVS Health Ventures. It then announced a new deal with US Acute Care Solutions focused on reducing the wait time for patients with mental health needs in the emergency department to get psychiatric care.

Array Behavioral Health has been around for more than 20 years, making it a pioneer in the digital mental health space. The company initially made a name for itself working with health providers to supply on-demand access to psychiatrists and other licensed behavioral health professionals.


It has also doubled down on treating patients with serious and acute mental illness – a focus many digital health companies have shied away from in the past.

Behavioral Health Business caught up with Array CEO Geoffrey Boyce to discuss the company’s new deals, funding and what’s next for the company.

This interview has been edited for length and clarity.


BHB: Can you talk to me about the CVS partnership? Why did it make sense? 

Boyce: We think of CVS as a significant strategic partner of ours, in addition to it investing within the company. What I think made both parties feel good about that investment was the fact that we had a history with one another where we had been working to serve Aetna members through our at-home service line, and bringing therapy and psychiatry directly to their members in their homes. We had experience working with Aetna members on-demand in our scheduled care services, where we already saw their membership within hospitals and clinics.

So we’re a known entity. And we’re validated in the fact that we are really focused on high-quality clinical services, and have a proven model and clinical approach to doing that.

What got really exciting to us was looking at how innovative we think CVS is in the health care space overall – how aggressively they’re moving into health care delivery, and how they want to leverage the unique footprint that CVS has to make care more accessible.

What I particularly love about it is they don’t want just to do physical health; they want to do whole-person care. To them, it is really a person’s overall wellness, and their physical health and mental health are inseparable. I think that message stood out to us, that this is a great group to partner with and grow our relationship with, because they’re doing great things and making physical health more readily accessible via their retail clinics and enterprise virtual care and health hub minute clinics, and things like that. And they want to layer additional behavioral health services in, and that’s something that we’re extremely well positioned to help offer and plug in together.

Can you talk to me about this US Acute Care Solutions deal?

That on-demand service – where we can make one of our clinicians available to evaluate an individual in crisis and partner with the local or on-site professionals to figure out the most appropriate, least-restrictive level of care – got started way back in 1999. It is a logistically challenging, specialized service to offer, and it’s something that we’re very good at and have a lot of experience with.

We’ve always done that in hospital emergency rooms and psychiatric crisis centers. Up to this point, we’ve been targeting and building relationships directly with the health system and then getting plugged into their hospital emergency rooms, crisis centers, or, increasingly, urgent care-type centers.

What we’re really excited about with this partnership with US Acute Care Solutions is they’re already plugged into a lot of these hospital emergency departments. Their team is seeing patients board unnecessarily in hospital emergency rooms and face unnecessarily long waits.

US Acute Care Solutions said, “Look, we want to offer a more comprehensive solution to our hospital partners. We’ve got the emergency medicine side of this handled, but we’re really struggling with how we serve the psychiatric needs of individuals in these emergency rooms.”

We really saw this just hand-in-glove solution, where they have an existing footprint of hospitals that they know would benefit from timely psychiatric services. And so we decided to partner with them and to blend their emergency medicine and our emergency psychiatry together, again, to offer a more comprehensive, whole-person-oriented solution to these hospital emergency rooms.

How do you think that digital can be a means to treat patients with more acute or serious mental illnesses?

That’s a way that we try to differentiate ourselves. One, we’re a practice that’s heavily oriented towards psychiatry. And two, we’re a practice that has really always had an emphasis on more complex and severe cases of mental illness. It starts with some of those crisis situations in emergency rooms, and it flows into our scheduled care programs where we’re working in community mental health centers and primary care centers.

We’re regularly treating schizophrenia, major depressive disorder and PTSD. There’s been a flood of activity in this space that has focused on some of those milder cases – on anxiety and depression, and plugging a digital solution into those. And that’s great. We’re very supportive of that. Anything we can do to get more services, more care out there, we’re supportive of.

But what we’re often finding is that some of those subclinical or technology-driven solutions don’t tie into escalation points and handoffs to real, licensed professionals in some instances.

We’ve focused on the pinnacle of mental health services with licensed professionals, starting with sub-specialty psychiatrists, general adult psychiatrists, psychiatric nurse practitioners, therapists, and counselors on down.

We’ve seen really great success with technology, and augmented services, for more significant cases of mental illness. But in many instances, we do find it comes down to needing to have a live licensed professional involved in that case. That’s where we ended up using video conferencing pretty significantly. But we see a lot of opportunity to plug in other digital tools to complement the live services of the licensed professional and to extend the benefit of their work beyond that live session.

It’s a bear market right now. We’re seeing less funding. But it seems like Array is going full-steam ahead. How are you approaching 2023, especially in this environment?

Unlike some others that are newer into this space, we have the benefit of years worth of foundation building in this space to really refine our clinical model and our services, and the way that we partner.

We’re extremely well-positioned to keep on our growth trajectory and to weather the storm that’s out there right now. It comes back to when we were building and doing this before it was cool. So yeah, we’re full-steam ahead because, one, we are emboldened by the foundation that we’ve built. But two, we see such a tremendous need out there.

The need for our services has never been greater. We’re a very mission-driven organization where our wildly important goal is to impact and transform more and more lives. And so we’re motivated by that, and we want to lean in and keep growing.

Is there any particular subspecialty or area ripe for the company to go next?

We see a significant need and opportunity with that on-demand service.

One of the unfortunate realities of the pandemic is that we’re seeing more and more people flowing through those hospital emergency rooms in situations of psychiatric crisis. The need has never been greater for timely evaluation and intervention and disposition to the right level of care.

We’re leaning in heavily to that on-demand service, as evidenced by this new, exciting partnership with US Acute Care Solutions. We’re really excited about connecting that emergency intervention to the right level of follow-up care, which might be an inpatient unit, might be in an outpatient program, but could be directly to an individual in their own right.

We like the fact that because of this continuum of services that we offer, we’re able to really present more opportunities for discharge and referral options as an individual is leaving that hospital, potentially even leaving that hospital emergency room.

Then if you think about the potential of the kind of ecosystem that is CVS and its footprint, being able to use those as extra access points for care, hopefully, to keep individuals in a state of wellness in their community or in their homes where they don’t end up cycling back through that hospital emergency room.

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