Talkspace vs Doctor On Demand (Which telemedicine giant wins?)
This article will compare the various features of two telehealth platforms, Talkspace and Doctor on Demand. Talkspace is tailored to exclusively deal with mental health issues while Doctor on Demand deals with all types of medical health care including behavioral health. Both of these platforms have therapy and psychiatry services available.
In the following table, you will be able to understand the different services offered by these two platforms, their costs as well as the dissimilarities between Talkspace and Doctor on Demand.
|Feature||Talkspace||Doctor on Demand|
|Types of services||Therapy and Psychiatry||All types of health care|
|Pricing||Min 260 USD||Min 75 USD|
|Payment options||All major credit or debit cards, HSA, FSA||All major credit cards, Paypal,HSA, FSA, HRA|
|Age group||13 years and above||Any age group|
- Talkspace can be used from anywhere
- It offers therapy as well as psychiatry
- It can be covered by insurance
- Talkspace does not offer group therapy
- Messaging therapy may not be for everyone
- Those who don’t have insurance may find this costly
Doctor on Demand
- Doctor on Demand can be used for general healthcare
- It offers insurance coverage
- It has a large network of mental health professionals
- Doctor on Demand only offers video sessions
- It can be difficult to get appointments
- It can be expensive
Talkspace was created as a means to make mental health care affordable and easily accessible for everyone. This platform was founded in 2012 by Roni and Oren Frank. Since its launch, Talkkspace has expanded incredibly and offers therapy services as well as psychiatry services for its users.
Picture credit: Talkspace
In this platform, users can easily access mental health professionals in a very short span of time which might not be possible in traditional mental health care settings. Talkspace also functions completely online, making it easy for those who cannot leave the house often. Thus, the platform has found immense popularity after the onset of the coronavirus pandemic.
Talkspace also offers various formats and modes of therapy which users can choose according to their conveniences and preferences. Users can find not only individual therapy, but also couples therapy and teens therapy in this platform. Furthermore, all the services of Talkspace are eligible for insurance coverage, making it even more affordable for everyone.
About Doctor on Demand
Doctor on Demand is a telemedicine platform that offers general health care as well as behavioral health care services. This platform allows users to consult with expert medical professionals through video conferencing, thereby bringing high levels of convenience as well as ease of use for all.
Picture credit: Doctor on Demand
Doctor on Demand was founded in 2012 by Adam Jackson, Jay McGraw and Phil McGraw. This platform is not only popular among individuals who are seeking more convenient medical care but also among employers who use Doctor on Demand to help their employees.
In Doctor on Demand, users can gain access to various categories of treatment, namely urgent care, behavioral health, preventative health care and even chronic care. The affordability of Doctor on Demand is quite high, especially since it has paired up with numerous in-network insurance providers to make health care accessible for everyone.
Best features of Talkspace
Talkspace is one platform that offers a plethora of tools and features that anyone who is seeking mental health care will definitely love. The best features of this mental health platform have been explained in this section.
Talkspace can be accessed from everywhere
The great thing about Talkspace is that it can be accessed and used from practically anywhere. The platform operates completely online and all that the user needs is a smart device and a stable internet connection. This becomes splendid especially for those users who stay in remote areas which have a dearth of licensed mental health professionals.
It makes mental health care affordable
Through Talkspace, mental health care becomes a lot more affordable and thus more accessible for all classes of society. The plans that Talkspace offers are pretty cost-effective when compared to in-person therapy. Furthermore, all the plans in the platform are eligible for insurance coverage through a variety of in-network providers.
It offers various formats of therapy
There are also various formats of therapy that are offered in Talkspace. Users can opt to communicate with their therapists through live chats, live audio sessions and live video sessions. Talkspace thus brings a high level of convenience and comfort to the user which is not always possible in traditional therapy settings.
Talkspace has couples therapy
Talkspace offers not only therapy for individuals but also couples counseling or couples therapy. This type of therapy involves helping partners establish a strong foundation for their relationship and can also help them regain or renew their fondness for each other. Couples therapy in Talkspace also allows couples or pairs to choose from a large network of counselors.
It has teens therapy
The platform offers teens therapy in addition to the many other features that it offers. The teens therapy in Talkspace can be used by adolescents between the ages of 13 years and 18 years. Teens therapy has a lot of importance as this age group often faces high levels of stress and anxiety related to school, relationships and peer pressure.
It has a sleep program
Talkspace has another splendid feature for its users called the sleep program. In this program, those who are finding it difficult to fall asleep or stay asleep throughout the night can learn behavioral techniques and coping strategies to help them get the rest they deserve and require. He sleep program in Talkspace goes on for a period of eight weeks.
Talkspace has psychiatry services
The platform offers therapy as well as psychiatry services which are necessary for those who are dealing with mental health conditions like severe depression, anxiety and schizophrenia. The psychiatry services in Talkspace are also eligible for insurance coverage. It has to be remembered though that certain substances are not allowed to be prescribed here.
It is completely HIPAA compliant
Users as well as the mental health professionals working in Talkspace do not have to worry about the privacy and security of their data and identity as the platform is completely HIPAA compliant. As a result, one can find numerous security features here like end to end encryptions, multi-step authentications and even firewalls.
It provides messaging therapy
Messaging therapy is another spectacular feature that is found in all the plans that Talkspace provides. This feature allows the user to send a limitless number of messages to their therapists at any time of the day. The messages can also be of different formats like text messages, audio messages and video messages.
It has numerous plans
Talkspace is a master at offering variety and choices for its users. This plan offers not only one but three different plans that users can choose from according to their varying needs. The plans offered in Talkspace are the Unlimited Messaging Therapy Plus plan, the Unlimited Messaging Therapy Premium plan and the Unlimited Messaging Therapy Ultimate plan.
Best features of Doctor on Demand
Doctor on Demand offers different kinds of health services and aims to cater to all types of non-emergency medical issues including behavioral health. Some of the best features that this platform provides for its users have been detailed in brief as follows.
Doctor on Demand provides urgent care services
Doctor on Demand has a brilliant array of urgent care services through which medical conditions like skin issues, UTIs, migraines, allergies and even STIs are treated virtually with no need for the patient to leave the house for treatment. However, the urgent care services cannot be used for problems like traumatic brain injuries, lacerations or fractures.
It also offers services for preventative health
Preventative health emphasis on instilling healthy habits and lifestyle changes so that individuals can ward off lifestyle diseases like diabetes and hypertension. In the preventative health features of Doctor on Demand, the patients can embark on lifestyle counseling, nutrition advice and even age-related screening procedures, all in a single space.
It takes care of chronically ill patients
Chronic medical issues like hypertension and diabetes require constant attention and also attention at the right moments. To help those who are battling medical conditions like asthma, obesity and even thyroid issues. Doctor on Demand provides chronic care facilities in which important factors like exercise tolerance, heart health and weight issues are taken care of.
It offers high quality video sessions
All the appointments in Doctor on Demand are conducted through high quality video sessions. This includes the live therapy sessions as well. Live video sessions ensure that the clients and medical professionals or mental health professionals can see each other, all the while from the comfort of their own homes, which becomes very useful in a COVID-19 world.
Users have control over their choices here
Unlike other online therapy platforms that assign a therapist or another medical professional to the user, the clients in Doctor on Demand can choose their professionals by themselves. The clients here are provided with the bios of the professionals through which they can make their choice. This in turn proves to bring higher levels of accountability and ownership for the user.
Doctor on Demand is HIPAA compliant
Doctor on Demand is completely HIPAA compliant and takes the security of its users and clients very seriously. Thus, the platform has been accredited by three different groups for its strong dedication to data security. Doctor on Demand has been recognized by HITRUST, the National Committee for Quality Assurance and the American Telemedicine Association.
It also offers psychiatry services
In addition to therapy, Doctor on Demand also provides psychiatry services for those who require medications or drugs for the management of their medical conditions. The psychiatrists in Doctor on Demand can prescribe a range of medications but certain controlled substances like benzos are not allowed to be prescribed here.
It allows insurance coverage
The insurance coverage available in Doctor on Demand is extensive and easily applicable. This platform also allows users to use Medicaid, Medicare or even HSA or FSA accounts for payment options. Those users who want to know if their insurance covers Doctor on Demand can find out by starting the registration process and entering their insurance details.
It provides quick access to professionals
Medical professionals and mental health professionals can be quickly accessed through Doctor on Demand. The minimum waiting time on this platform is around five minutes and this is reserved for urgent care situations. However, the waiting time in Doctor on Demand can vary depending on the time of the year.
It is pretty easy to use
Most users of Doctor on Demand have mentioned that the platform is pretty easy and very simple to use. The high user-friendliness of this platform allows the clients or patients to easily sign-up and access high quality medical care. The platform also guides the client along the way in a step by step process.
Pricing of Talkspace
The pricing in Talkspace can vary depending on the location of the user as well as the plan that they are opting for. The cheapest and most basic plan in Talkspace is the Unlimited Messaging Therapy Plus plan while the costliest one with most features is the Unlimited Messaging Ultimate plan.
Those who are planning on subscribing to this platform can expect to pay around $69 per week if they are choosing a monthly plan. The costs of these plans can be reduced if the user is opting for a longer subscription. Additionally, Talkspace allows insurance coverage for all its plans which can further reduce the costs.
Pricing of Doctor on Demand
The pricing in Doctor on Demand will depend on the type of professional care that the patient requires. There are no subscriptions here and thus the patient will have to pay session per session. For a 15-minute consultation with a doctor, the user can expect to pay around $75 and the prices will vary for behavioral health services.
For a psychologist consultation for a period of 25 minutes, the patient will have to pay $129 and $179 for a 50 minute session. On the other hand, if the patient wants to connect with a psychiatrist, they will need to pay $299 for the first consultation and $120 for follow-up sessions which will last for 15 minutes each.
Signing up for Talkspace
To sign up for Talkspace, the user will have to go to the Talkspace website or download the app from. They will then need to click on the ‘Get Started’ option which will ask them for various details. Talkspace will then provide a questionnaire to gather more information about the user and their mental health issues.
The platform will next guide them to a consultant therapist who will brief the user about various services and features offered in the platform. The last step of the sign-up process is where the user will be matched with a compatible therapist. They will be then intimate via email for the next step of the onboarding.
Signing up for Doctor on Demand
To sign up for the services in Doctor on Demand, the user will have to go to the website of the platform and click on the ‘Get Started’ option. This will open a registration page where the user can enter their basic details including the date of birth. They will also be required to enter their insurance details to see if coverage is eligible.
In the next step, the user will be shown a directory of medical professionals whom they can choose based on their bios and other information provided in the Doctor on Demand platform. The user will be placed in the waiting room and will be notified once their doctor becomes available. The waiting period is limited to around 5 minutes for urgent care related cases.
Tips for using Talkspace
Talkspace, while very user-friendly, can be intimidating sometimes due to the large number of features that are available here. Those who are new to the online therapy itself may often find difficulties in this platform. Some tips to help users of Talkspace have been described in the points below.
- Talkspace offers several formats of live therapy sessions, from live chats, live audio sessions and live video sessions. If you are someone who is not so comfortable with face to face meetings, you can always opt for the live chat or the live audio feature. These can be great for introverted personality types.
- If you are opting for a live video session for your therapy, make sure your selfie view is turned off. Having this feature ‘on’ can make you distracted from what your therapist is saying. Instead, you will be focusing on how you look during your session creating more stress and frustration.
- You can improve the effectiveness of your therapy sessions by creating and maintaining a therapy journal. In this journal, you can write down your therapy goals and also jot down your reflections about your ongoing therapy sessions.
- You can also use the blog that Talkspace offers for its users. In this space, you can find numerous resources and articles related to mental health topics as well as other areas of life such as career, legal issues and even financial issues.
Tips for using Doctor on Demand
Doctor on Demand provides plenty of features for not only mental health or behavioral issues but also general health care. Some suggestions to improve your experience on this platform have been described in detail below.
- If you are not sure about whether you need to go for therapy or psychiatry, do not worry. In Doctor on Demand you need to pay only per session and thus you can always be referred to another mental health professional if your current one thinks you require different treatment.
- While going through the bios to choose your therapist, try to see if the mental health professional matches your style and also your beliefs. This requires a bit of self-awareness so it helps if you take some time to think and jot important factors down.
- To ensure that your therapist or psychiatrist understands you better in this platform, you can practice looking directly into the camera to mimic a more natural eye-contact.
- Since all the communications in Doctor on Demand are done through live video sessions, you will need to create the right space and time for this in your home. It is also necessary to have high-speed internet so that you and your therapist can communicate without any glitches.
Personal experiences in Talkspace
Users have had varying experiences in Talkspace while utilizing it for their mental health. Some of the personal experiences of users on this platform have been summarized in the points below.
- Users of Talkspace have especially loved that there are no in-person meetings required in this platform. This has proved to be highly useful for those who are disabled or even for mothers who cannot leave their children alone at home while seeking therapy.
- Many users have found immense benefit in Talkspace especially after the onset of the coronavirus pandemic. Talkspace has allowed them to quickly and easily access mental health care with no risk of infections, while also bringing comfort and convenience into the picture.
- Some users who are new to online therapy have felt that the treatment sessions in Talkspace are too impersonal as there are no physical connections.
- Several users have felt that the messaging therapy is a definite miss and does not contribute widely to their mental health.
Personal experiences in Doctor on Demand
Doctor on demand caters to not only mental health but also general non-emergency medical conditions. A large percentage of the users of this platform have had gainful experiences, like the ones mentioned below.
- Patients of Doctor on Demand have found the platform and user interface very easy to use and simple in nature. This has allowed them to access medical care even if they were not well.
- However, many users or patients of this platform have had issues in setting up appointments with the medical or mental health professionals.
- There is no subscription plan in this platform and thus, there are no guarantees that users will always get the same professional always due to calendar and scheduling issues. This can be infuriating, especially for those who are seeking therapy through this platform.
- Most users of Doctor on Demand have found the waiting time to be very less, especially when compared to traditional health care facilities.
Talkspace and Doctor on Demand cater to the needs of thousands of people every day. Talkspace is exclusively designed for the purpose of mental health care, while Doctor on Demand provides features for all types of health care. For those who are seeking mental health care in specific, Talkspace here might be the more obvious choice.
Talkspace has numerous options for those seeking therapy as well as psychiatry services. Both these features are eligible for insurance coverage which can greatly increase the affordability of mental health care. In Talkspace, the users can opt to communicate with their therapists through chatting, phone sessions and video sessions.
Doctor on Demand has plenty of features for anyone who is looking for an easy way to access medical care or even mental health care. The great advantage of Doctor on Demand is that there is a very less waiting period and thus users can consult doctors in a very short span of time. The behavioral health services in this platform cover both therapy as well as psychiatry.
BetterHelp: A Better Alternative
For those who are seeking another great space for mental health care, we highly recommend BetterHelp. BetterHelp provides features for online therapy through various formats such as live chats, live audio sessions and live video sessions. BetterHelp offers couples therapy as well as teens therapy.
In addition to various types of therapies offered here, it also offers group sessions that are conducted about once a week and cover more than twenty different topics related to mental health and mental illness. BetterHelp additionally offers financial assistance for anyone who is finding affordability an issue in this platform.
Frequently asked questions:
Is Dr. Phil’s Doctor on Demand free?
No, Doctor on Demand is not free. In this platform, users need to pay for their consultations or appointments. Doctor on Demand is also eligible for insurance coverage which can greatly reduce the costs of healthcare.
Does Doctor on Demand take insurance?
Yes. Doctor on Demand takes insurance. This platform has tied with a large number of insurance providers such as Cigna, Optum and Blue Shield through which users or patients can lessen the costs of their health care services.
Can Doctor on Demand prescribe blood pressure meds?
Yes, the medical professionals in Doctor on Demand can prescribe blood pressure meds. Furthermore, this platform has a preventative and chronic care feature that are designed to prevent lifestyle illnesses like hypertension and also treat those who are battling hypertension in specific.
Is Talkspace HIPAA compliant?
Yes, Talkspace is HIPAA compliant and takes the privacy and security of its users very seriously. The platform has incorporated strong security features such as encryptions and firewalls for this very purpose.
Can you use Talkspace anonymously?
Yes, you can use Talkspace anonymously. If you wish, you can use the services of this platform by using only a nickname where you identity will be concealed.
If you like this article, please post your comments and questions below.