Study Finds Cognitive Behavioral Coaching Highly Effective for Reducing Stress

May 6, 2020

Mental Health Coaching Poised to Help the Rising Number of People Dealing with COVID-19 Stress 

BURLINGAME, Calif. – May 6, 2020 Lyra Health today announced the publication of a real-world evidence study in the Telemedicine and eHealth Journal. The study shows cognitive behavioral coaching is highly effective for reducing stress and improving well-being. The research comes at a time when more than 60 percent of Americans are feeling stress and worry amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Cognitive Behavioral Coaching (CBC) is one key offering — in addition to therapy and medication management — included in Lyra’s comprehensive mental health benefits solution for employers. According to the study — Effectiveness of a Cognitive Behavioral Coaching Program Delivered via Video in Real World Settings — which included nearly 300 people and is one of the first CBC studies conducted outside of a lab in a real-world setting, key benefits of this type of evidence-based coaching included:

  • Nearly 85 percent of the coaching participants experienced improvement in well-being, and nearly 80 percent saw an improvement in perceived stress levels; 
  • Participants who started with particularly high stress or particularly low well-being improved at even higher rates — 95 percent showed improvement in stress, and 97 percent showed improvement in well-being; and
  • 95 percent of participants rated their experience with Lyra’s coaching program “Very Satisfied” or “Satisfied.”  

“Employers should not underestimate the impact COVID-19 will continue to have on their workforce’s stress levels and overall mental health,” said Connie Chen, Chief Medical Officer at Lyra Health. “This study shows that mental health coaching is a viable, cost-effective solution for employers looking to provide the best possible care for their workforce at a time when stress levels are at their peak due to the pandemic.”

The study, which was conducted as a retrospective study using existing registry data from Lyra and its partners for delivering coaching services, further reinforces that CBC holds the potential to:

  • Meaningfully expand access Since coaches do not require state-specific licensure to practice, CBC can help unlock a larger pool of professionals who can operate flexibly across state lines and treat clients in difficult-to-reach areas. This could help to reduce the barriers to mental health interventions as people deal with mounting stress from COVID-19.
  • Significantly reduce costs of care — This study adds to the literature validating coaching as a useful and more cost-effective tool in comparison to psychotherapy for improving well-being in individuals seeking care who don’t suffer from diagnosable mental health disorders. This is especially important at a time when many businesses and households are dealing with the emotional and financial impacts of the coronavirus pandemic.
  • Prevent more serious mental health issues — Providing people who experience significant but not yet clinical levels of distress with an effective intervention, like CBC, may prevent them from escalating into the clinical range of symptoms that has increased negative impact on their mental health and may require more lengthy and costly care. 

Lyra’s mental health coaches are highly vetted and undergo rigorous, ongoing training in evidence-based care techniques that are grounded in cognitive behavioral therapy best practices. These specially trained coaches support Lyra Health members who have lower-level symptoms but still face real mental health challenges in their daily lives. CBC focuses on the development of skills that help members reduce their symptoms and become more self-sufficient. 

See our Executive Summary for more information on the study’s findings.

 

About Lyra Health

Lyra Health, a provider of innovative mental health benefits for more than 1.3 million U.S. employees and dependents, is transforming mental health care by creating a frictionless experience for members, providers, and employers. Using matching technology and an innovative digital platform, Lyra connects companies and their employees–plus spouses and children–to world-class therapists, mental health coaches, and personalized medication prescribing. Leading self-insured employers partner with Lyra to tailor value-driven mental health benefits programs specific to their workforce. With Lyra, companies can offer employees fast, reliable access to clinicians who practice evidence-based mental health care approaches that have been proven effective.