Behavioral health workforce shortages may be attributed to availability of higher wage jobs in other industries

Boosting the behavioral health workforce is cited as one of four key ways lawmakers want to improve Washington’s mental health system, according to the latest installment of the The Mental Health Project at the Seattle Times. UW CHWS Sr. Deputy Director Sue Skillman addresses this workforce shortage and notes that some staff are leaving because they’re overworked, burned out, or retiring; but many are finding jobs with higher pay. Community-based behavioral health care salaries in Washington are $20,000-$35,000 less than those offered by providers who see more patients with commercial insurance. Read the full article.