Fight Shortage of Psychiatrists in the U.S.

mental-health-by-hey-paul-studios

Target: John Boehner, Speaker of the U.S. House

Goal: Address the shortage of psychiatrists in the U.S. by providing adequate reimbursement from government and private insurance plans and increasing federal funding to psychiatry programs to encourage more students to take up the profession.

Federal health authorities recently found that about 4,000 areas in the U.S. have more than 30,000 people for every one psychiatrist, a major and troubling shortage of mental health professionals. Charles Ingoglia helps coordinate 2,300 not-for-profit mental health clinics and says he doesn’t know of any part of the country where it’s easy for members to find psychiatrists.

There have been major efforts to educate about mental health and reduce its stigma, while millions of Americans became eligible for mental health care under the Affordable Care Act. Tragedies in the U.S. relating to mental health seem to occur every week, whether it’s a shooting or a suicide.

Among the medical community, the perception of inadequate pay plays a role in discouraging students from choosing psychiatry as a specialty over general practice or surgeons who make more annually. Medical students may be excited about scientific developments in psychiatry but they’re also concerned about the profession’s stature and pay levels.

This shortage is an incredibly urgent issue that must be addressed with solutions immediately lest it get worse and become a potentially deadly issue. Tell officials to address the shortage of psychiatrists in the U.S. by providing adequate reimbursement from government and private insurance plans to psychiatrists and increasing federal funding to psychiatry programs to encourage more students to take up the profession.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear John Boehner,

Federal health authorities recently found that about 4,000 areas in the U.S. have more than 30,000 people for every one psychiatrist. Shootings and suicides in the U.S. related to mental health seem to happen every week, so a lack of people able to assist with this problem is an extremely urgent issue that needs to be dealt with immediately. 

The perception of inadequate pay plays a role in discouraging students from choosing psychiatry as a specialty over others that pay more, citing concerns about the profession’s stature and pay levels. Current psychiatrists are frustrated by inadequate reimbursement from government and private insurance plans. 

I urge you to address the shortage of psychiatrists in the U.S. by providing adequate reimbursement from government and private insurance plans to psychiatrists and increasing federal funding to psychiatry programs to encourage more students to take up the profession.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: Hey Paul Studios

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