Accentus Health launches mental health app
Trauma left over from responding to COVID-19 is taking its toll on first responders … but now there’s an app for that.
The S.T.A.R. Support app by Accentus Health aims to put mental health resources in the hands of those seeking help 24/7.
Morgan Koth started Accentus Health to fill a niche he saw in the health and wellness space for providing well-rounded self-help.
Koth developed all-around fitness and wellness app OptimumU with Big Kitty Labs in 2019 to combine the missions of helping users track health and fitness stats and access motivation and mindfulness resources in one central, easy-access app.
While working on OptimumU, Dan Rockwell of Big Kitty introduced Koth to Kenneth Yeager, a researcher at Ohio State University’s Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Health.
Koth and Yeager first teamed up to help the state of Ohio launch the F.I.R.S.T. Support app in mid-2020 to streamline access to mental health resources to first responders. The effort was an outgrowth of research by Yeager’s STAR Program at OSU.
Yeager’s team researches and designs data-based stress, trauma and resilience treatment programs. Koth says he and Yeager knew there could be synergies between OptimumU’s mobile app delivery of self-empowering physical wellness and Yeager’s proven resilience training research.
They decided it was eminently possible to deliver those resources via a downloadable app for use at home, confidentially and in private, on the user’s own time.
Next, Koth turned his sights onto providing similar resources to other group clients such as hospitals, other clinics, even high-stress industries like construction firms, and soon after, Accentus Health licensed OSU’s technology and launched the S.T.A.R. Support app for individuals and organizations.
“Even though we are talking about mental health more in society, there still is that stigma, people still feel ashamed or weak, ‘I should be able to do this on my own, why am I not?’ Especially folks like police, physicians, nurses, even high achievers like students, their backpacks so to speak become too heavy to carry by themselves,” says Koth.
The app is free for individuals, and organizations can subscribe to create a customized program with their own specific live and online resources added in.
Users take an assessment to get started, and then get unique learning courses and nudges unique to them to help complete learning and to-dos.
The Dublin Police Department signed on as the first paying organizational client in early 2021.
Cynthia Bent Findlay is a freelance writer.
Business: Mental health support platform
Founder and CEO: Morgan Koth
Employees: 5, 2 full-time
Investment to date: Self-funded, would not disclose