Brightside Health is a private company, licensed and registered in the U.S. Their main offices are in San Francisco, where they have more than 80 employees. Even though it was only established in late 2017, the company has shown remarkable growth over the past few years and has positioned itself as one of the rising forces in the online therapy industry.
|U.S Based Company||Yes|
|Number of Licensed Therapists||Unknown, But Not a Lot|
|Therapy Modes||Text, Audio and Video|
|Available Treatments||Private Counseling and Psychiatric Treatments|
|Average Price||$95 – $345 Per Month|
|Sign Up Time||Few minutes|
|Response Time||Within a Day or Two|
|Customer Reviews||88% positive|
|Our Editorial Rating||4 Stars|
|Current Promotion||$50 Off Your First Month|
You can sign up and start using Brightside within a matter of minutes. The process is very easy and the software is modern and intuitive, so even people who are not tech savvy should have no problem doing it. It begins with you filling in a few personal details, followed by a free assessment survey you will need to complete.
The free assessment questionnaire is designed specifically for treating issues relating to anxiety and depression. Once you complete it, you’ll receive a breakdown of how your system rates you on both scales. Make sure you answer all questions as honestly as you can, since it will be used by the Brightside staff for determining the most appropriate treatment later on.
You will then be asked to fill in a few more personal details and choose your preferred treatment plan. Then, you’ll have to pay and subscribe for at least a month. Once you do that – you will only have to wait a day or two before a meeting would be set between you and your potential therapist.
Brightside puts a lot of emphasis on medication and your therapist will suggest the prescription they think can help you the most. Don’t feel pressured into taking pills you are not sure about – you should always do some research first, and can ask to continue therapy with medication for the meantime, or for a 2nd opinion from another counselor on the platform. To change your therapist at any time, simply email support.
If you do choose to take medicine prescribed to you by a Brightside specialist, it will be delivered to your doorstep 4-5 business days after the consultation. You will then be able to update your therapist through the Brightside app regarding any side effects and your overall progress. If needed, followup meetings can be scheduled, or a change in prescriptions is possible as well.
Even though there are not enough therapists working for Brightside, at least when compared with other providers, the level is very high and they are all extremely qualified. We don’t like the fact you don’t get to choose who sees you – but at least the meetings are scheduled quickly and so is the delivery of your prescribed medicine.
Therapists on Brightside focus almost entirely on treating anxiety and depression, and they all do that using CBT treatment techniques. CBT is intended for short term relief, and usually does not treat the underlying issues that caused you to feel bad in the first place. Still, when combined with proper medication, it is very effective in what it aims to accomplish.
All therapists have at least a Masters degree in a relevant mental health field, 1000 hours of proven clinical experience and a certificate from their state’s board. While we found quality to be overall very good, the level is still lower compared to Amwell, and the standards for accepting therapists onboard are also lower when compared to industry leaders such as Betterhelp and Talkspace.
At Brightside, psychiatric evaluation and medical prescriptions are an integral part of the package. That doesn’t mean your doctor will give you medication no matter what – they will first speak to you, evaluate your situation more accurately, and only then decide what treatment is most suited for you. This is done very professionally, and they clearly have your safety and wellbeing in mind, but we did feel they were a little bit too inclined to decide medication is the optimal method of treatment.
Psychiatrists are only allowed to prescribe over the counter medication. No controlled substances such as Xanax are included. Most medication available falls under the category of antidepressants (SSRIs, SNRIs). Furthermore, Brightside therapy is not applicable for people who are dealing with severe mental health issues or those who are a danger to themselves or others – in such cases you should seek immediate, live help.
This all means that when it comes to psychiatric treatment, Brightside is most suited for people who have already been diagnosed and are now seeking a convenient way of getting their medication online, as well as some form of support through virtual therapy and chats.