China’s mental health record is tarred by social stigma and a lack of resources. While public initiatives are now seeking to rectify the issue, the country’s active startup ecosystem is also competing to fill the gaps.

According to a study published in 2011, a staggering 91.8% of Chinese people with a mental health diagnosis never seek help. Part of that has to do with the shortage of trained mental health professionals in China, as well as the country’s psychiatrist-to-patient ratio, which is as low as 1.24 per 100,000 patients, compared to the global average of 4.15 per 100,000.

“The problem is huge,” says Jin Hsueh, the co-founder and CEO of KaJin Health, a Taiwanese startup that provides an online counseling service to people in Chinese-speaking communities. “There are [90] million [people with] depression in China, and very, very [few] that ever seek for help, talking to a doctor or therapist.”

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Eva Xiao

Eva Xiao is a tech reporter based in Shanghai. Contact her at eva.xiao@technode.com or evawxiao (wechat & twitter).