The Company and The People Behind the Passion

Empathetics provides innovative empathy and interpersonal skills training for medical professionals leveraging new, scientifically proven methods that enhance human relationships and make medical practice more effective and efficient.

Empathetics’ co-founder, Dr. Helen Riess is a psychiatrist and medical educator at Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School who developed novel empathy training based on the neuroscience of empathy at MGH. Her training was tested in an initial pilot study at the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary with evidence of significant improvement in physician empathy. She then conducted a randomized controlled trial of the empathy training with her research team from the Empathy and Relational Science Program at MGH. The results of this trial demonstrated significant improvement in patient ratings of patient-related physician empathy. The brief training consisted of 3 hours of empathy education spaced over 6-8 weeks. Her team then conducted a one year follow up study at Mass. Eye and Ear Infirmary with the same cohort of physicians and found that the improvement in physician empathy was retained one year later. These studies have been published in peer-reviewed medical journals.

Empathetics, Inc., is an independent for-profit company founded in 2011. The initial Empathetics products are based upon the subject matter developed at Massachusetts General Hospital. The subject matter of the initial products has been exclusively licensed by MGH, together with the registered trademark “E.M.P.A.T.H.Y.®,” to Empathetics, Inc., but Empathetics is not part of nor is it sponsored by MGH. Empathetics develops its own copyrighted content to provide interpersonal communications education in order to improve human engagement. The marks “Empathetics” “Empathetics- Neuroscience of Emotions” and the associated logo are trademarks owned by Empathetics, Inc.

Dr. Riess’s ground breaking empathy training research was highlighted in the New York Times as the first study to demonstrate that empathy can be taught. This finding was an answer to two decades of major media headlines demanding more empathic care from medical professionals. Empathetics’ empathy training has been presented to thousands of physicians and nurses around the world, and Empathetics, Inc., has made the training available in web-based format to allow implementation throughout large healthcare systems.

Helen Riess, M.D. is Co-founder, CEO and Chief Scientist for Empathetics. Dr. Riess is a clinical and research psychiatrist who developed an empathy training approach based on research that was rigorously tested in pilot studies and a randomized controlled trial at Massachusetts General Hospital. She completed her residency and Chief Residency at MGH and serves as part-time Associate Professor of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School. Dr. Riess is a core member of the Consortium for Research on Emotional Intelligence in Organizations (CREIO). Dr. Riess has devoted her career to teaching and research in the art and science of the patient-doctor relationship.

Suzanne Oakley earned her MBA in Finance and New Business Development from MIT’s Sloan School of Management and her BS in Business Administration from Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business.  Ms. Oakley brings her experience in business planning, financial modeling, financial management, and strategy development as CFO to Empathetics.

Jennifer Moccia joined Empathetics as Chief Growth Officer after 20+ successful years in sales and marketing at Condé Nast, an organization known for its rigorous training and high standard of excellence. She has designed, closed and executed revenue-growth enhancing programs across business categories. Jennifer is passionate about enhancing empathy in healthcare, informed by navigating the healthcare system for her loved ones.

Austin Young is Director of Learning Operations and Product Development. A graduate of the Harvard Graduate School of Education, and a professional educator, Austin specializes in learning design and technology. His work at Empathetics is driven by his passion for social and emotional learning and its potential to improve our lives, work, and capacity to cooperate toward a kinder and more just world.

Diana Diaz is the Project Coordinator for Empathetics. She executes the implementation of Empathetics products to clients and manages the Learning Management System. A graduate of Middlebury College, Diana has a strong background in management and logistics and brings a passion to advancing empathy in healthcare.



Empathetics, Inc., is an independent, for-profit company founded in 2011.   The initial Empathetics products are based upon the research of Dr. Riess conducted at Massachusetts General Hospital.  Empathetics licensed Dr. Riess’s subject matter material and the trademark “E.M.P.A.T.H.Y.®” from MGH.   Although MGH receives royalties from Empathetics on sales of its products, MGH does not have an ownership interest in the company and does not sponsor or endorse the company.  Empathetics develops its own copyrighted content to provide interpersonal communications education in order to improve human engagement.  The marks “Empathetics,” “Empathetics – neuroscience of emotion” and the associated logo are trademarks of Empathetics, Inc.