Investors understand that virtual behavioral health services are not only here to stay, but are critical to addressing the nation’s mental health crisis. that’s why CVS Health on Monday poured in $25 million in a Series C funding round for Array Behavioral Care.
Array’s existing investors also participated in the round and contributed additional capital—they include Wells Fargo Strategic Capital, Health Velocity Capital, Harbor Point Capital, HLM Venture Partners, OCA Ventures and OSF Healthcare. The New Jersey-based company raised $24 million during the Series B round in 2021, but his previous investments are not disclosed.
The company’s history dates back to 2009, Array CEO Jeffrey Boyce said in an interview. That same year, he co-founded a startup called InSight Telepsychiatry with Dr. James Varrell, who serves as Array’s executive chief medical officer. The startup began as an extension of the work Dr. Varel was doing in his inpatient psychiatric practice.
In 2019, InSight united with a Chicago-based company called Regroup Telehealth that provided similar services. The combined company was rebranded to Array in 2021 — Boyce said the name represents a set of offerings the company offers across the continuum of care.
Array operates as a virtualized outpatient mental health practice. The company is focused on creating an environment where clinicians can be successful and provide their patients with the best possible outcomes, Boyce announced.
“We’ve worked very hard to build a culture — and systems and processes — that put clinicians in a position to practice as a group of colleagues,” he said. “They’re really trying to implement team-based care using technology to deliver their services. We’re putting them in a position where they can focus on really high-quality clinical care that uses measurement and is focused on outcomes to deliver great outcomes.”
Array services are in network with most major payers – including Etna, which is part of CVS Health. The company documents all patient visits in its electronic health record and then submits claims to health plans on the back end.
Array also sometimes integrates its clinicians into other provider groups, Boyce explained. In these situations, a hospital or clinic can be an Array customer. Once Array clinicians join the medical staff at a hospital or clinic, they document their visits and submit claims using that provider’s EHR.
Last year, Array clinicians had more than 400,000 patient encounters, Boyce said.
CVS made the decision to invest in Array because demand for virtual psychiatric care is high, said Cara McNulty, CVS Health president of behavioral health and mental wellness. When CVS was determining how best to democratize access to quality mental health care for members, it chose Array as a trusted partner because the company was in the virtual mental health space long before it took off during the pandemic, she said.
McNulty acknowledged that one company can’t solve the nation’s mental health access problems — to make things better, many providers and health plans will need to collaborate and expand services. That’s why Array isn’t the only mental health company CVS has invested in or plans to invest in. For example, CVS is involved in a suicide prevention startup Oui Therapeutics‘ $26 million in funding last year.
there is many virtual mental health companies CVS has to be selective when it comes to their next investment. This also means that Array is competing with many different startups. But Boyce believes Array stands out for two reasons.
The first is Array’s “strong emphasis” on psychiatry. More than half of Array’s clinicians are psychiatrists, which allows the company to provide services to more acute patients, Boyce said.
The second difference is Array’s ability to provide services across the continuum of care. Patients can connect with Array clinicians from a variety of settings—such as their home during a crisis, the emergency department, an inpatient hospital room, or an outpatient clinic.
“We’re really trying to be able to bridge that continuum of care to help people and our partners find solutions to address mental health issues, rather than just providing a one-stop solution and then disappearing,” Boyce said.
Photo: Nuthawut Somsuk, Getty Images