According to research by the National Alliance for Mental Illness (NAMI), 70 percent of people who drop out of mental health treatment do so after just their first or second visit. Also, research from Mental Health America shows that 20 percent of people receiving mental health treatment still report unmet needs. The reason behind these issues is the lack of patient engagement which in turn leads to low rates of homework adherence that affect the efficiency of therapy. Changing all this is NeuroFlow, a company started by an Army combat Veteran turned technology entrepreneur who wants to be a resource in empowering providers and patients in mental health.
His company’s HIPAA compliant platform offers secure, real-time technology to optimize mental wellness and performance through effective monitoring, positive reinforcement, and targeted guidance. “Mental health patients find it hard to manage themselves, especially when they don’t see any benefits of work they put in. Patient engagement in the clinic and at home is crucial to treatment success, and that’s where NeuroFlow comes in to empower mental health providers and their patients,” states Christopher Molaro, CEO of NeuroFlow.
In 2016, Molaro co-founded NeuroFlow along with Adam Pardes, COO of the company, and in just a few short years, assembled a team of experts in neuroscience, physiology, and behavioral health—conducting research in partnership with the University of Pennsylvania. For Molaro, NeuroFlow is not a business model; it is a mission. “NeuroFlow was started as a passion for mental health and a resource for providers. The idea was to make health providers more effective and help them in empowering their patients, hoping to get them better faster,” asserts Molaro.
NeuroFlow’s core focus is to support a fully-rounded treatment plan, and the firm’s HIPAA-compliant web-based software fulfills that need while empowering both the providers as well as their patients. The NeuroFlow platform enables healthcare providers to assign homework to their patients that can be completed directly within it and tracked for compliance.
NeuroFlow was started as a passion for mental health and as a resource to empower providers and patients throughout treatment
“It improves retention, allows for better communication and more specifically, keeps patient engaged in the therapy process,” says Molaro. “We know that seeing is believing, so we created a way for patients to see their progress.” He adds that patients can also run sessions with wearables, write journal entries, and utilize content on NeuroFlow’s website to better manage their mental health outside of the clinic, even after their session is over.
Mentioning how NeuroFlow further helps patients, Molaro talks about commercially available heart rate monitors and electroencephalography (EEG) wearable devices that the company uses to analyze data and objectively quantify emotional regulation and executive function during therapy exercises. “It’s completely optional, but patients can use these wearables—EEG brainwaves headsets and heart rate monitor—to measure the emotional state during a therapy session,” states Molaro. The process then helps the provider to make more informed decisions to help the patient get better, faster.
One such client is Brian P. Daly, who is an Associate Professor and the Director of Clinical Training in the Department of Psychology at Drexel University. “I most frequently use NeuroFlow with kids who are anxious or those who are struggling with low frustration tolerance and anger management concerns. For both groups, the real-time data is helpful in providing them with feedback about learning how to relax when they are anxious or frustrated,” says Daly, who is also a licensed psychologist.
NeuroFlow is currently used in 62 clinics and hospitals around the U.S. with access to over 120,000 patients. Mental health is a broad issue that has implication across disciplines —comorbidities with anxiety and depression among chronic illnesses is a huge concern, and NeuroFlow thinks it can help make a big impact. Looking forward, NeuroFlow intends to continue to grow, and now supporting two insurance reimbursement codes, wants to support larger hospital systems and healthcare networks.