Harper is on a mission to advance human health span by pioneering novel science in mental health, from diagnostic to personalised care. The company has developed a mental health platform designed to deliver personalised care by leveraging the power of precision medicine and technology.
The company’s solution aims to meet the mental health and well-being needs of people, teams, and healthcare professionals through deep science and technology. Harper offers well-being support, with personalised care plans, in-depth insights, digital check-in and coaching enabling users in advancing healthspan by pioneering scientific developments in mental health.
Tell us about the business, how did it start?
Harper was founded around a simple vision, to use science and technology to improve human healthspan by alleviating mental health as a contributing factor of disease.
My Co-Founder, Dr Ved Sharma, and I came together in early 2021 having spent years in our own fields researching the downstream effects of mental health on physical illness and health conditions. After discovering a strong correlation between mental health and a variety of conditions, from cardiovascular diseases to infertility, we decided to create Harper.
We have since pulled together an incredible team of clinicians, scientists and technologists to build a framework that provides hyper-personalised mental health support to patients undergoing medical treatment, combining the power of AI with human empathy.
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What challenges have you faced?
The biggest challenge has been to educate patients on the real need to address their mental health as a contributing factor of their health condition. While it is hard for people to deal with their mental health in ‘normal’ times, it is far more difficult when their health isn’t optimal.
Further, we have also had to constantly iterate on our care framework and value proposition to ensure it resonated with the target patient audience while considering the cost to payers, e.g. clinics. Harper has gone through significant changes in scope, whereby we sadly had to forgo exciting innovation.
How has the business evolved?
Harper is in essence translational research. Starting as a research project a few years back when we put together a team of scientists, clinicians and technologists to study the correlation between mental and physical health through peer-reviewed research and large-scale epidemiological datasets.
From an understanding of the science, we identified an unmet patient need and developed a care framework leveraging computational AI, human interaction and precision medicine.
What can we hope to see from the business in the future?
The team is working hard to build a direct-to-consumer product that will leverage all of the same well-validated science and human empathy as our existing product to put our users in control of their mental well-being. Without giving too much away, we’re building a framework to provide daily support to 1 billion people worldwide, incrementally altering behaviour to improve well-being.
Our goal is not only to provide accessible care to people struggling with their mental health, but also to give people the tools they need to face their everyday challenges before they develop into more severe conditions.