Facebook’s former chief financial officer David Ebersman Thursday announced the launch of Lyra Health, which will aim to match people suffering mental health issues with the right health professionals and treatments, and will use analytics to measure outcomes “to ensure that people get the best care.”
Ebersman’s move is a return to the health care field. He worked for Genentech for 15 years, serving as CFO from 2005 to 2009. When Ebersman left as Facebook’s CFO in April 2014, he said he would be “moving back into health care.”
Lyra Health is building a technology platform to work with employers, health plans, and providers to improve behavioral health outcomes, according to a press release announcing the launch. The new platform will identify, engage, and coordinate care for people with behavioral health issues; guide and match patients with the right providers and treatments; and “rigorously” assess treatment outcomes to understand what works so that patients get the best available care.
“If you are living with a behavioral health condition like depression, anxiety, or substance abuse, finding the right care is particularly daunting,” Ebersman wrote on the startup’s website. “People are often directed to websites that lists hundreds of providers who seem indistinguishable — many of whom are not even accepting new patients. Trial-and-error is required to search for a provider who might or might not be the right one. The process is frustrating and ultimately exhausting. It is easy to understand why the majority of patients referred for behavioral healthcare do not even make an initial appointment. They just continue to suffer.”
“We are going to bring software and analytics to behavioral health in a systematic and comprehensive manner,” Ebersman added.
Additional co-founders of the company include Dena Bravata, formerly chief medical officer at Castlight Health who will serve as Lyra’s CMO; and Venrock partners Bryan Roberts and Dr. Bob Kocher. Lyra Health is now “actively hiring to fill out its software engineering and data analytics teams,” the company said.