Macalester College

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MiResource founding story

Growing up in a family of doctors in Northern California, I never imagined mental health care would become such a critical part of my life. However, everything changed when my younger sister, Shelby, began struggling with her mental health. It started with anxiety and soon escalated into depression, self-harm, and an eating disorder. Despite our parents' best efforts to get her the care she needed, Shelby was trapped in a never-ending cycle of treatments and hospital visits.

We were fortunate to live next to Stanford Hospital, and my parents did everything they could to find the right doctors and programs for her. But no matter what we tried, nothing seemed to work. As a family, we struggled to navigate the mental health care system. Sadly, Shelby was ping-ponged around the system, in and out of the emergency room, IOPs, PHPs, residential treatment programs, three different psychologists, three different psychiatrists, and more. Despite her willingness to seek help and follow through with treatment, we couldn't find the right care for her. Ultimately, we failed to find her the right care, and in 2014, we lost her to suicide.

Losing Shelby changed me forever. I knew I had to do something to prevent others from experiencing the same pain and hopelessness that Shelby did. I vowed to devote my life to creating a world where mental health care was accessible to everyone who needed it, where no one would be lost in the shuffle of the system.

In 2017, I teamed up with Gabriela Asturias to co-found MiResource. We were frustrated with how difficult it was for people to find and connect with mental health care after bravely seeking help. We set out to create a world where people could access effective mental health care. Since the company's inception, MiResource has helped connect hundreds of thousands of people to mental health care through its marketplace.

MiResource spent the first three years as a company powering the case management services at university counseling centers with a white-labeled provider finder that guides students through finding and connecting with local mental health care. In 2020, MiResource was awarded a $1.2 million phase 1&2 Fast Track grant by the National Institute of Mental Health to build the first machine learning algorithm to predict the right level of care for someone. I started to feel we were getting closer to helping others like Shelby. In 2021, we pivoted to powering health plans with our technology to help them connect their members to in-network mental health care. We want everyone to access affordable and effective mental health care for their needs, including therapy, medications, programs, and other treatments.

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