Meet Din Psykolog: the psychology service that’s always open
Using a smart-matching algorithm, Din Psykolog allows people to get in contact with a psychologist online, anytime. We spoke to founder Ramzi Jelassi to hear more about this unique healthtech startup.
Tell us about your background.
I’ve been interested in psychology since I was very young. I think it’s about being interested in your own thought process, which most people are. My first career was actually as a professional poker player. I travelled around the world playing the biggest tournaments, and used psychology to my advantage, and also worked on my own psychology. After that, I did a Bachelor’s degree in psychology and business and began working for a startup because I always wanted to start something myself. Once that business was mature, I decided to pursue my idea for Din Psykolog and found some other people to launch the platform with.
My co-founders and I all met in different ways: online, through friends, on Linkedin – and I also met my CTO through a startup event. And Felicia, who just started, is a psychologist and she’s worked at a company similar to ours before. We all fit really well together and have a great connection. I think we all really like working together.
Where did the idea for Din Psykolog come from?
Talking to a psychologist has had good results for me personally. For me, it’s a no-brainer that everyone should talk to a psychologist at some point. I saw people getting more and more comfortable talking to doctors online, and it felt like a natural step for people to start talking to psychologists online as well. So I decided to create a fully digital psychology service where people can contact to a psychologist anytime, from anywhere.
How does Din Psykolog work?
The patient logs into the platform using their BankID and answers a few simple questions. Based on that, we use a smart-matching algorithm to recommend psychologists that suits each individual’s needs. You can read about them and their background, and based on that, decide who you’d like to chat to. The entire interaction is text-based, so you can start writing to them immediately. You’ll always get an answer within 24hrs and can continue to write a little every day, or whenever you feel like it.
It’s similar for the psychologist. They login to their work profile and can see all of their patients collected in one place. They login every day and chat with patients, and have access to different tools to help them. The platform is really smooth and automates a lot of time-consuming, manual processes. This gives psychologists more time to speak to patients and raise the quality of care. The healthcare system is also pretty slow, especially when it comes to mental health. With Din Psykolog psychologists get to help more people, faster. It also gives them much more flexibility.
What other problems does it solve?
Most importantly, Din Psykolog lowers the threshold for people to actually start seeing a psychologist and makes it much easier. This is really crucial. I think most people walk around thinking ‘yeah, maybe I should go to a psychologist, but many don’t follow through. It’s still stigmatized or people don’t dare do it. But if you make it digital and easy, then you lower the barrier to entry and actually try it. The fact it’s text-based also makes it less intimidating. And our psychologists are great. They have so much experience.
What’s the most important thing you’ve learned so far on your startup journey?
There’s a lot of people out there who prefer writing compared to other forms of communication. A patient emailed me once asking if we would save their data after speaking to a psychologist, and I assumed they didn’t want us to. But it was the other way around. It turns out a lot of our patients want us to keep their text so they can log back in afterwards and read what they said and what the psychologist said so they can use it as a journal.
The act of writing can also be therapeutic in itself, even before the psychologist comes in.
What sort of unexpected challenges have come your way?
We’re in a highly regulated market, so there are some things we just have to do, like patient confidentiality and data security which is super important. There are specific regulations we need to follow and specific insurances we need to have. But as long as you have those hygiene factors in place you can start focusing on the service itself and adding value.
You have to have one eye on your vision – which is what you want to achieve, but at the same time, you have to work here in reality and look at what’s in front of you. You have to listen to your customers and build what they want, and that’s not always what you’ve planned for. Sometimes people don’t know what they want until you build it, and sometimes, you build stuff they don’t want. It’s a double-edged sword really. You just have to try to strike a balance between your vision, what’s required, and what actually your customers are saying.
Do you have any other advice for other startups in the health tech space?
Apply to Sting! (laughs). But to be perfectly honest, we’ve been part of a few other startup programs before. They were good, but this is on a totally different level. Here there’s an expert for every single thing we need help with. It’s not like somebody that knows a bit of this and a bit of that. They’re actual experts.
When we were looking for funding, we asked Fredrik if he could help us find investors and he said ‘I’ll see what I can do.’ I’ve heard that maybe 30 times in the past, and nothing usually happens. But he came back a few days later with an investor to talk to (that later invested). I thought ‘oh my god! This is totally different.’ Investors also put more effort in because they know the quality of Sting’s startups is high, so they’re willing to spend the time with you.
What’s next for Din Psykolog?
We just closed a round! We’ll use this money to improve the service so we can offer our users as much value as possible. We will also offer our service for a much lower price from now on, which is in line with us wanting as many people as possible to to be able to get help and make taking to a psychologist more accessible”
Would you like to learn more about Din Psykolog?
Visit their website or reach out to Ramzi at firstname.lastname@example.org