Texas House Committee on County Affairs
SUMMARY – In March 2017, the House Committee on County Affairs met to hear testimony. President and CEO Andy Keller, PhD, was invited testimony, presenting on “Texas Mental Health Workforce Needs.”
Dr. Keller covered shortages in the mental health workforce in Texas with the data such as
- 207 of our 254 counties are designated, in whole or in part, as Mental Health Professional Shortage Areas (MHPSAs).
- 241 counties have some level of shortage, both prescribers and core professionals. Over 80% are rural counties.
- The vast majority of providers live in five counties.
- Texas has a dramatic lack of diversity, resulting in a shortage of culturally and linguistically competent professionals.
Dr. Keller provided a comparison of behavioral health practitioners in major Texas counties with other cities nationally. He also highlighted concerns over the lack of state reciprocity and endorsement for physician licenses, a potential barrier in addressing state workforce needs.