PAU Alumna Andrea Scott, Ph.D., Launches Telehealth Platform

Monday, September 16, 2019
 
Andrea Scott, who earned her Ph.D. in clinical psychology at PAU in 2013, is at the forefront of an important mental healthcare delivery trend. In July 2019, Scott and her business partner Kurtis Williams launched Session Sync Inc. (www.sessionsync.com), a nationwide telehealth platform that connects licensed psychologists and patients via HIPAA compliant video on any webcam enabled device.
 
Session Sync enables practitioners to serve more people in the settings that are most convenient for them. “It is a great solution for those that work full time, new parents at home with children, people with limited mobility, individuals without transportation, and others who live in rural areas without access to appropriate mental health services,” said Scott.
 
After graduating from PAU, Scott completed her internship and postdoctoral fellowship at VA Loma Linda Healthcare System. She then joined the staff at VA Long Beach Healthcare System where she currently provides telehealth services and serves as the Director of Postdoctoral Training. “I saw the significant impact that telehealth makes, and it became my personal mission to create an affordable, easy-to-use platform for other licensed psychologists in the private sector. I found an incredibly talented  partner in Kurtis, who is both business savvy and posseses an MBA, and we worked together for two years before launching Session Sync.
 
The New Norm
Countless hospitals and healthcare systems across the county now provide telehealth services. This includes major leaders such as the Mayo Clinic, Johns Hopkins, Cleveland Clinic and Kaiser Permanente. The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is also a big proponent of telehealth services and is making a bold move toward expansion efforts. The VA is one of the largest nationwide employers of psychologists and one of the leading training settings for psychology trainees. Their aim is for 100% of mental health providers associated with the VA to be capable of delivering telehealth services by the conclusion of fiscal year 2020.
 
A Different Business Model
While teleheath is not new, some of the larger, popular telehealth companies retain a very large percentage of the client fee for its use, and maintain control over clinical decision making. Session Sync is based on a different business model that includes a significantly lower percentage rate per use, no upfront fees, and gives psychologists the freedom and control to provide services as they see fit. Session Sync also provides psychologists more support tools than other platforms including secure messaging, secure document transfer, note writing, online scheduling, and credit card processing. Patients simply choose a provider based on the state where they are located, select the type of mental health concern they would like to address, and indicate any preference for gender if applicable.