DOTHAN, Ala. (WDHN) — After a shocking stabbing in headland this week, it made mental health professionals like Ruthanne Wilkes realize how drastic the mental health and substance abuse crisis is in Alabama.
A state that is failing in both of those resources due to a lack of funding.
“We have a problem with not having enough providers for mental health,” Wilkes said.
Earlier this week, a 70-year-old woman Annie Mckay was found dead inside her home on rock creek road with multiple stab wounds. The man accused of the stabbing — her own son — Alex Mccay.
“That’s tragic I don’t know the details or what his specific situation was,” She said.
However, officials did determine McKay has a history of drug use and mental illness — that has caused recurring problems with family in the past.
They also discovered he had mental health medication that was not being taken.
“People with some serious illnesses have no insight into their illnesses they don’t think they have a problem and there needs to be a wider system for this type of thing,” She added.
But it’s hard to provide the best resources without money. With Alabama ranked among the worst, the state department of mental health has requested a 40 million dollar increase for the legislature to consider to help go towards minimizing the crisis.
“If they could increase it for Medicaid or substance abuse programs,”
Because Wilkes said there are so many barriers in Alabama.
Medicaid limits adults to 14 visits per year which is not enough for mentally ill people and nurse practitioners not having full practice authority for mental health care.
“I don’t know what his situation maybe he ran out of Medicaid visits maybe he couldn’t afford substance abuse Alabama we gotta do better,” Wilkes added.
Wilkes hopes the legislature will approve the extra funding in the budget to help the crisis.