The Texas Tribune reports that clinics in rural and other underserved parts of Texas are making a big push to hire mental-health workers.
To assist them, Lone Star State legislators have just created a program —at a cost of nearly $3 million over the next two years — to help pay off mental-health professionals’ student loans if they work in underserved areas.
The program seeks to address the state’s shortage of mental-health professionals — including social workers, psychologists, counselors and psychiatrists.
The Tribune reports that state health-agency officials concede that there is a “chronic maldistribution” of the state’s mental-health workforce.
And the Texas Medical Association estimates the state needs about 1,100 more psychiatrists to bring Texas up to the national average.