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- Experience: 25 years
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An Overview of Mental Health Resources in Vancouver, Washington
Vancouver is a busy Portland suburb. Like it’s Canadian cousin, the city was named after Captain George Vancouver. It’s the fourth largest city in Washington. It has a population of 169, 982 people. Residents have a median income of $52,000. Wages increased by more than two percent between 2015 and 2016.
Vancouver has been ranked as one of the best places to settle down in America. In 2016, WalletHub listed the city as the 39th best place for American families to make a home.
The state, like many others in the country, is struggling with its treatment plans for the mentally ill. However, Vancouver is one of the better places for potential patient to end up.
80,194 people are employed in Vancouver’s economy. The median income of $52,000 is slightly lower than both the state and the national number. The median income for the state is well over $60,000.
73% of the population is white, 12% is Hispanic, and 5% is Asian. 13.5% of the population lives below the poverty line, on par with the national average of 14%.
The city’s rate of homeownership is fairly low at 49.2%. The national average is over 63%.
Less than one out of three residents have a bachelor’s degree.
Vancouver Crime Rate
Vancouver is slightly more crime-ridden than the rest of Washington, perhaps because its residents are poorer. A wealth of research has demonstrated the link between poverty and crime. Most of Vancouver’s residents aren’t facing poverty, but they are working with smaller neighbors than their Washington neighbors.
Your chance of becoming a victim of violent crime in Vancouver is 1 out of 259. In Washington it’s 1 out of 331. Rapes are also slightly more common in Vancouver.
However, property crime rates have been sinking.
Vancouver Mental Health
Clark county, which houses Vancouver, ranks 12th out of Washington’s 39 counties when health care is considered.
“These rankings are relative to other counties and while they fluctuate somewhat year to year, they have remained relatively stable,” Dr. Alan Melnick, county health officer and Public Health director, said. “Many of the health challenges in Clark County mirror national trends.”
A 2015 report found that while Vancouver was strong on some points, it needed to improve others. Among the recommendations for improvement was devoting more resources to mental health, particularly teen suicide.
When mental health struggles are ignored, it leads to severe problems later in life. Many of the people currently living on the streets are battling mental health issues.
The state recommends one counselor per 250 students in the school systems. Vancouver is currently meeting that goal, with one counselor per 259 students. However, the picture isn’t so rosy for adults. Adults may have trouble getting proper care.
Vancouver Mental Health Resources
The city proposed building a $17 million crisis triage center intended to help mentally ill patients in the grip of an attack. Too often, these people are funneled into jails and prisons rather than hospitals. However, in 2018, only $3 million of the project was funded. The city’s good intentions are being wasted.
The same problems are being mirrored at the state level. Officials approved $149 million for mental health spending through July 2019. Yet over $80 million will be used to pay fines and administrative fees.
Two Vancouver women recently formed Mothers of the Mentally Ill (MOMI ). Their goal is to carry our message to state legislators, city and county leaders, medical providers, law enforcement and courts, and the media . . . the lives of our loved ones are in imminent danger because of mismanagement and abusive, discriminatory policies in health care law and systems.”
A July 2018 Associated Press report described the largest state hospital as a “nightmare.”
They don’t have enough staff to protect patients, or provide them with the bare minimum of care,” Lisa Bowser said. Bowser’s mother spent years at Western State Hospital.
“Going there was like going into hell… I honestly thought they would kill her before I could get her out.”
The hospital was sanctioned by federal authorities. State officials including the governor have promised to make changes.
Use Our Therapist Directory
For adults, finding proper mental health care in Vancouver can be difficult. There are a lot of providers to choose from. Our therapist directory can help you choose some who feel you comfortable with. You can use the directory to sort through providers based on pre-determined criteria. Choosing the right therapist is critical for the success of your treatment.