I recently came across a new online healthcare service in the US called Lin Health. The concept of having specialists at your fingertips was intriguing and one I felt could have immense benefit. I’m pleased to be able to collaborate with Lin Health and bring you an introduction to this service here on InvisiblyMe.
Update 2022: Lin Health has changed since this post was written. I believe the cost has risen but the newly updated website doesn’t appear to show current charges. As such, please note that some elements of this post may no longer be relevant, including the prices.
What Is Lin Health?
Lin Health is a web-based app for patients anywhere in the US. It will work on all platforms as you own’t need to actually download an app. It’s accessed directly through your web browser, allowing you to use it easily on your desktop, laptop, mobile or tablet.
Lin brings you the tools and specialists for your health at the touch of a button (or the swipe of a touchscreen). Instead of various expensive visits to general practitioners, pain specialists, psychologists and so on, you’ll have a multidisciplinary team, a personal mentor, daily care plan and remote services to help with your healthcare journey, from diagnosis to treatment and pain management.
About The Brand
Lin Health was first launched in February 2021, with the pre-beta for the app launched in April 2021. The brand is based in Denver and they offer healthcare services via their web-based app for the US.
This was the information I gleaned from asking the brand directly. Unfortunately, I could find no external source information or reviews on Lin Health for the purposes of this review. It’s understandable with Lin being so new that outside information is scarce, so hopefully this review can help a few more people discover the service.
What You Get With Lin Health
Lin Health provides some fantastic benefits to help you with your healthcare needs. These include the likes of :
- Unlimited access to your personal Lin Coach, who’s there to support you every step of the way. This can be via the messaging service on the browser-based app, by voice calls or video chats
- A 30 minute consultation, in real time, with a medical specialist who’s trained in pain management
- A customised daily care plan, where you’ll get the “best-in-class remote care technologies and services”. These could be for the likes of sleep, remote PT, behavioural and weight management
- Prescriptions via your care plan for supplements and medications – these can be delivered to you or picked up from your pharmacy
- Professional consultations for pain diagnosis by a multidisciplinary team of specialists
- A selection of informative, inspirational and motivational videos and podcasts
How Much Is The Lin App Subscription?
Lin Health offers three types of subscription, allowing you to subscribe to or cancel as you wish so that you get the best use of it for your needs. You can pay monthly and do a month-to-month rolling basis ($129 p/month), take a six month subscription (equivalent to $109 p/month) or subscribe for the full year (equivalent to $82 p/month). This would be a fraction of the cost of seeing individual specialists. The monthly price has increased in 2022 given price rises in all sectors, but for that you get the aforementioned benefits, from your personal coach and care plan, to healthcare tools and specialist support from a multidisciplinary team.
Your Lin Coach
You get a real human as your personal Lin coach, not a pesky chatbot. That coach will be able to consult with a multidisciplinary team of medical experts, from MDs and dieticians, to physical therapists and psychologists.
The coach will be there for guidance, support, companionship and as a source of hope. The app suggests messaging with your coach at least 3 times a week for optimal benefits to get you moving forward with your health and/or pain.
By regular contact – along with completing various tasks set out on the app to identify your pain, illness or other symptoms – your coach will be better placed to adequately support you. Unlike a brief consult with your general practitioner, you don’t need to relay your whole medical history in a mere few minutes, then have less than five minutes for the diagnosis and treatment before you’re ushered out of the room. Instead of the doctor having only a limited snapshot of what’s going on, your Lin Coach will get to know you, your needs and what it is you want from the service.
Sign Up Process
There’s an initial questionnaire that takes two minutes, which will ask you about your health issues, when they started, where any pain is, and so on. You’re asked to provide a name, email address and mobile number; the latter is so they can send an SMS to verify your account but your coach also can send you text updates should you wish. If you don’t want to receive texts for anything else, you can simply opt out.
Unfortunately, Lin Health no longer offer a 7 day free trial. It’s $129 per month which auto-renews unless you cancel. You can cancel at any time, or re-subscribe at a later date when you feel you’ll get the most use from the service. You may alternatively wish to keep it running for several months to get uninterrupted ongoing support, motivation, and healthcare advice. You can save more money on the monthly cost if you subscribe for 6 or 12 months.
To sign up, you need a credit or debit card. Other forms of payment, like Paypal, are not accepted at the present time.
Starting Your Lin Health App Journey
When you first get on the app as a registered user, you’ll have a few tasks. These introduce you to Lin Health and what the service offers. I like the way in which they speak to you as a patient, showing their understanding of what it’s like to be fobbed off by medical specialists, to be disbelieved or to be living with chronic pain for years with little in the way of support.
You’ll be asked to send your first message to your coach, then come back to some more introductory snippets.
There’s an “integrative assessment process” for you to get all of your information, experiences, symptoms, conditions, pain history and so forth onto the system for your coach to see. You can also schedule a live call with your coach to start the process of them getting to know you and figuring out what goals you want in place.
You’ll be asked a few questions to recap what you’ve just learned about Lin. I can’t say I’m keen on his bit because it’s like a school test of what you’ve just read by selecting true or false. That said, it does help to reinforce some key issues, like the importance of an integrated approach and the importance of regular engagement with Lin and your coach.
From here, you’ll have more tasks to undertake, sharing your experiences of illness and pain so that your customised plan can start to take shape. The multidisciplinary team will be better placed to help you with the more information you’re able to provide.
The care plan could include “support”, without specifying exactly the type of thing this might be, around the likes of diet and nutrition, managing stress and mood, relationships, sleep, physical therapy, movement and exercise, reducing substance abuse, positive thinking, CBT, and pain education. These are all great elements to incorporate in a most holistic approach for pain management.
You’ll then get to schedule another coaching call, receive PT support, get a 30 minute appointment with a pain diagnostic professional, and so on.
My Thoughts On The Lin Health App
The layout is very user-friendly, with simple navigation and clear wording. When it comes to the set-up and introductory tasks, it’s easy to see what needs to be done for each part and how to do it. It’s not too word-heavy and questionnaires aren’t too dense, making the steps more manageable.
Communicating with your coach is straightforward and I like the different options for doing this as it makes it more versatile and approachable, whether you want a video chat, written message or phone call. It does, however, appear that to continue down your to-do list and get the benefits from the service, you have to schedule the initial 15 minute online video chat.
The concept of bringing together tools and specialists at the touch of a button is fantastic. As many elements of our healthcare become digitised and remote, this approach makes sense. It’s also far more convenient than multiple appointments that you’d have to otherwise wait for and travel to, and the monthly subscription price of Lin would likely be a considerable amount cheaper than the cost of even a single specialist appointment.
I really like the supportive nature of this with the coach. Managing chronic pain is not easy, and it’s both a physical and emotional journey. The mental health impact of chronic pain shouldn’t be underestimated, so having someone on your side for the psychological support elements is brilliant as that’s sadly lacking in typical healthcare system.
This is still a fairly new brand and service. I’d expect some teething issues that need to be ironed out, but there aren’t as many as I would have anticipated. I’ve noted what I’ve found below. On the whole, it works pretty smoothly and effectively, with no major glitches or problematic elements that would deter me from using it.
In the FAQ section, there’s a question regarding their stance on opioids. They say they’re happy to help patients go through the benefits and risks of such medications, and support those who are on opioids by acknowledging how important they can be for some patients, but they’re unfortunately unable to provide prescriptions for opioid medications. I think that’s worth being aware of if you take opioid painkillers and were looking to take up your healthcare and prescriptions through Lin.
Any Hitches, Glitches Or Downsides?
The sign-up process was pretty straightforward but I’d like to see clear prices before registering. When I signed up it said there was a 7 day free trial, when this wasn’t actually available at the time, the banners just hadn’t been updated. Unfortunately they no longer offer a free trial and the prices are higher than I would expect, so I think this could be a sticking point for those who can’t afford it. That said, you could still spend more seeing specialists separately so you’d need to figure out what is more useful and cost-effective in your personal situation.
I did have a problem on sign-up when putting in my mobile number. This seemed to be a glitch which resolved when I retried it two days later. This is one of the small hiccups I’d expect from a new site so it doesn’t worry too much and the customer service is responsive to help you out if you were to encounter any issues.
During the initial tasks after signing up, there was one little bit I wasn’t keen on. “The slow and steady path out of pain. Here’s how to get better”. It may seem like a very minor point, but I don’t imagine I’m alone in finding that a bit irritating. There is no end point here, at least not for me that I can see, for a life without pain. For those of us with chronic illness and chronic pain, we live the meaning of chronic with conditions that won’t “get better”.
After you complete some of the tasks, like answering your coach’s questions or filling in your pain history, the answers seem to disappear once they’re sent to your coach. You can’t go back into these sections and just adjust or add to your answers.
There was an odd typo spotted, which is again very minor. I noticed some elements stated weren’t correct, simply because the text hadn’t been updated. For example, the free trial offer at sign up and the FAQs where it states you can try Lin and get the 15 minute call with your coach without paying a penny, which also isn’t the case.
However, most of these are things that I imagine will be quickly ironed out, corrected and improved upon.
Reassurance & Cancellations
- The Lin service is HIPAA compliant.
- Lin Health have a Satisfaction Guarantee. This enables the possibility of refunding the month’s membership cost, providing you’ve tried using Lin, if you feel dissatisfied with the service.
- I like that you can cancel at any time by dropping them an email. The ability to subscribe per month makes it more cost-effective, particularly for those wanting an odd month here and there when it’ll be of greater use.
- There’s a short FAQ for further information, and you can always get in touch with the brand or your coach with any queries.
Lin App In A Nutshell
I really do love the concept here of healthcare services and a multi-disciplinary team of specialists right at your fingertips. The ability give your coach a deeper understanding of your issues is also appealing and potentially very helpful. I would personally love to see it in the UK and elsewhere in the world.
What you get from the app feels supportive, building on the holistic nature of Lin. The added motivational and personal elements give the patient more emotional support, which is usually lacking within healthcare and when it comes to pain management specifically. This goes alongside the medical and practical support very nicely, and the subscription cost could save patients a small fortune on different doctor and specialist appointments.
For those with chronic illness and chronic pain, the benefits afforded by the app may be all the more valuable. To be able to get a well-rounded experience where you’re able to share your full story with an understanding coach beats a 10 minute appointment with a doctor who’s too rushed or unaware of your situation to be able to adequately help you.
It’s still pretty new in the healthcare arena, but I can see the value in the Lin App and I think it has great potential to go far in the e-health revolution.
Find Lin Health
Have you ever come across Lin Health before? Is a more holistic service like this with tools & specialists at the touch of a button something you would find helpful?
[ This is a collaborative post written by myself. A brief subscription was also gifted to allow me to test the platform out for this post ]