Aetna Better Health® of Illinois Partners with Kooth Digital Health, Providing Mental Health and Well-being Tools for Thousands of Teens and Young People

Updated on April 10, 2024

Kooth Digital Health, a mental health and well-being platform for young people, today announced a partnership with Aetna Better Health® of Illinois. The one-year partnership will provide thousands of teens and young people in Illinois access to Kooth’s digital platform at no cost to the end user.

Data shows that teens and young people benefit from access to well-being tools to help develop better skills and mental health management. According to a National Alliance for Mental Illness report, 61.8% of 12- to 17-year-olds in Illinois who have depression did not receive any care. The same report indicates that high school students with depression are more than twice as likely to drop out than their peers, and seven in 10 youth in the juvenile justice system have a mental health condition.

The Kooth platform offers young people access to safe, confidential, and moderated content, community, and professional support from Illinois licensed clinicians. Certain Aetna members will have free, on-demand access to Kooth’s resources, including:

  • Self-guided journeys, including evidence-based therapeutic content and tools like mood tracking, breathwork, free writing and journaling prompts, podcasts, videos, and more.
  • Safe, moderated community spaces for peer support.
  • Professional support through drop-in chat or ongoing, structured counseling sessions.

“Aetna is committed to pursuing innovative interventions to surround our members with health care solutions to build healthier populations across our state,” said Rushil Desai, CEO of Aetna Better Health of Illinois. “Our schools are Ground Zero of the mental health crises facing our children and teenagers each day. By partnering with Kooth, we are providing a transformational service to our youngest members delivering real-time, digital support for those facing complex issues. Our goal is to support them before a crisis emerges.”

Worldwide, 17 million people have access to Kooth’s support, helping teens and young

people dealing with stress, anxiety, depression, and other challenges. Kooth Digital Health supports approximately 100,000 students across Pennsylvania. In California, more than 6 million 13- to 25-year-olds now have access to Kooth’s platform through Soluna, which the state Department of Health Care Services launched in January 2024 as part of a historic $4.6 billion commitment to youth mental health.

Kooth Digital Health Chief Services Officer Patrick Johnston, Ph.D., said, “The mental

health crisis threatening our teens and young people is unprecedented in scale and scope. Thankfully, leaders in every corner of the United States appear ready to act. But action doesn’t need to just happen at the state or federal level. We can all make a change. Aetna Better Health of Illinois’ decision to bring preemptive care to teens and young people proves that government, private business, and nonprofit organizations can all offer teens and young people the lifelines they deserve.”

About Kooth Digital Health

Kooth Digital Health is an innovator and pioneer in youth-focused digital mental health, offering upstream early identification and prevention to improve outcomes and costs. Its online platform is accessible to more than 16 million people worldwide. Kooth’s web-based platforms and apps let users access professional support sessions at no cost, peer support, and self-help tools, such as mood tracking, journaling, and moderated forums. Kooth aims to be the gold standard model of care for personalized, proactive, and accessible digital support that includes a choice of therapeutic pathways: self-therapy, peer support, and professional support. For more information, visit https://gov.kooth.com/us.

About Aetna Medicaid

Aetna Medicaid Administrators LLC (Aetna Medicaid), a CVS Health company, has over 30 years of experience managing the care of under-resourced populations, using innovative approaches and a local presence in each market to achieve both successful health care results and effective cost outcomes. Aetna Medicaid has expertise serving high-need Medicaid members, including those who are dually eligible for Medicaid and Medicare. Currently, Aetna Medicaid owns and/or administers Medicaid managed health care plans under the names of Aetna Better Health and other affiliate names. Together, these plans serve members in 15 states, including Arizona, Florida, Illinois, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas, Virginia and West Virginia. For more information, www.aetnabetterhealth.com.

The Editorial Team at Healthcare Business Today is made up of skilled healthcare writers and experts, led by our managing editor, Daniel Casciato, who has over 25 years of experience in healthcare writing. Since 1998, we have produced compelling and informative content for numerous publications, establishing ourselves as a trusted resource for health and wellness information. We offer readers access to fresh health, medicine, science, and technology developments and the latest in patient news, emphasizing how these developments affect our lives.