At Shift Workspaces, we consider ourselves lucky to have such an amazing community of members. Each month we have the pleasure of interviewing one of those great people and their business so that everyone has a chance to learn more about those within our community. This month we were able to speak with Paul Deger of Sanvello. Take a look below to learn more:
Tell us what Sanvello is, your role, and how you first came to be a part of the company?
Sanvello is a digital behavioral health company—we provide self-care, peer support, coaching, and therapy, all accessed from a single app. My primary role at Sanvello is teletherapist, but I wear several hats, including onboarding our new therapists and psychiatrists, supporting clinical operations, helping to develop our app-based Guided Journeys, and presenting live webinars on mental health topics to our employer clients.
I had previously been with another company within UnitedHealth Group designing and delivering virtual mindfulness programs. I then had the good fortune of our mindfulness company becoming part of Sanvello, where I can not only offer mindfulness, but also the broader range for services from Sanvello.
What is telehealth?
Traditionally, healthcare is provided with the client and healthcare provider in the same physical location. Even before COVID-19, this could create a barrier to persons accessing healthcare. Now with COVID, even more so!
Telehealth allows an expansion of care delivery—in our case, mental health services—by using technology to allow the client to participate in healthcare from a location that is safe, comfortable, and easy for them. This greatly increases access to care getting to more persons in need. And the research on tele-mental health is that it is as effective as brick and mortar care. And for some persons, telehealth creates even more comfort and safety then going to a therapist’s office.
How has your business grown in the past several months? What changes have you seen?
Social distancing and other changes with COVID resulted in the combination of increased need for telehealth and many persons experiencing increased stress with our world turned upside down. At Sanvello, we were ready to respond to this increased demand to mental health care provided remotely. We have seen usage of all our services increase: self-care, coaching, therapy, and psychiatry.
It is humbling and an honor to be of service during this unprecedented time of stress, uncertainty and anxiety as persons attempt to navigate this new normal that none of us could have predicted or prepared for.
What type of businesses would benefit most from your services?
We partner with businesses that care about the well-being of their employees. During this year, we have been responsive to the unique demands of organizations needing to quickly pivot to the ever-changing demands of continuing to do business under COVID, and the stress and anxiety this has caused their employees.
Sanvello also partners with physician groups and insurance payers to make sure their clients and members can get the much-needed mental well-being support at this time.
What about your job inspires you?
I have been in healthcare for over 30 years. And I find Sanvello to be unique in living our mission “To help people build the life skills they need, anytime, anywhere, in any way they choose.” I have seen many the company that these words exist in print only. Now in my second year at Sanvello, I see this mission not only in the products and services we offer our clients, but also in how we care for the well-being of our employees, too. This sense of community and well-being fuels me, especially as we respond to overwhelming need brought about by COVID.
I feel supported to bring my best every day to easing the suffering of others, be it training a new teammate, helping to develop a new tool for the app, or doing a telehealth therapy session with someone across the country. Mental health has been underserved for a long time—and I am inspired to be part of the solution to finally turn the tide on meeting this need.
What drew you to Shift to be the home base for your company?
I had looked at several co-op/coworking spaces in Denver, and Shift stood out immediately. Instead of just another corporate-like space, the staff at Corona, the overall vibe, and the fellow members at Shift just felt like home from the first visit. As the only employee of Sanvello locally, I appreciate how I feel part of a community at Shift. Several fellow members have become true friends I look forward to chatting with over a cup of coffee in the morning, at lunch in the courtyard, or a beer at Thursday happy hour (hopefully that third one returns after COVID!).
And the staff ROCKS! Sarah and Hayley make sure I have what I need so I can focus on my tasks and people.
What do you enjoy when you are not working?
My son is crazy about all thing’s vehicles— cars, vintage tractors, trains, construction equipment—so we spend our weekends going to car shows and museums. During COVID, we started Sunday drives. We just take off in some direction and see what unknown vehicle finds we can stumble across.
I also love to “hit the rocks,” or climb on the beautiful crags up the canyons outside Denver. A day on the rocks is good for body and mind!