New study suggests Lubbock doesn't have enough mental health pro - FOX34 Lubbock

New study suggests Lubbock doesn't have enough mental health providers

LUBBOCK, Texas -

In the U.S. nearly 1 in 5 people have some sort of mental health condition this according to the American Medical Association. It reports there aren't enough psychiatrists to meet the demand. Here in Lubbock there is 1 mental health professional for every 700 residents this according to a recent survey conducted by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Program.

Chad Wheeler leads 'Open Door' a non-profit that helps homeless people with housing and supportive services. He said the lack of providers should be a concern for everyone.

"I think it is important for Lubbock citizens to kind of be aware of what we are facing as a city," said Wheeler. "To voice our support for these efforts to improve our system and to express the need that we have."

According to the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC), medical schools and teaching hospitals are taking a variety of measures to address the shortage, that includes recruiting more future psychiatrists. From 2010 to 2015 the number of new psychiatry residents grew 5.3% nationwide. One of biggest causes for the shortages is retirement, more than 60 percent of practicing psychiatrists are over the age of 55. 




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