AUSTIN — The Texas House has preliminarily approved a proposal offering to help repay student loans for psychiatrists who provide care in underserved parts of the state.
Passed Thursday 89-52, the bill provides help repaying student loans for medical personnel who work in “designated mental health professional shortage areas.”
Those qualifying would also have to treat Medicaid patients, low-income children or people confined to some state-run correctional facilities. The Senate passed the bill last month. It now needs only a final House vote to be sent to Gov. Greg Abbott to be signed into law.
According to a recent state report, fewer than 2,000 licensed psychiatrists were offering direct care in Texas as of September 2013.