Washington State Behavioral Health Workforce Assessment 2019-2020


The 2019 Washington State Legislature charged the Washington Workforce Training and Education Coordinating Board (Workforce Board) to convene a work group to develop policy and practice recommendations to increase access to Washington’s behavioral health workforce. The recommendations, developed with stakeholders, were to address the following barriers: a) reimbursement and incentives for supervision of interns and trainees; b) supervision requirements; c) competency-based training; d) licensing reciprocity or the feasibility of an interstate licensing compact, or both; and e) background checks, including barriers to work related to an applicant’s criminal history or substance use disorder. The University of Washington Center for Health Workforce Studies collaborated with the Workforce Board to carry out this project. The legislation associated with this project directed that two reports would be produced, the first to be provided by December 1, 2019 and the second by December 1, 2020.
Lead Researcher: Susan M. Skillman, MS
Contact Info: skillman@uw.edu



Washington Department of Health






Authors Title Type Date Documents/Media
O’Connor JG, Dunlap B, Gattman NE, Skillman SM Washington’s Behavioral Health Workforce: Barriers and Solutions. Phase II Report and Recommendations PUBLICATION 12-01-2020
Full Report
O’Connor JG, Gattman NE, Coleman L, Dunlap B, Skillman SM Washington’s behavioral health workforce: Barriers and solutions. Phase I report and recommendations PUBLICATION 11-01-2019
Behavioral Health Workforce Phase 1
O’Connor J, Skillman SM Washington’s Health Workforce – Committee Update (including WA Behavioral Health Workforce Assessment) PRESENTATION 01-27-2021