New partnership aims to help those dealing with mental health issues

MIDLAND, TX (KWES) - It takes a little bit of time to turn a plan into action.

"It took several months to come through with the vision," said Robert Duncan, Chancellor of the Texas Tech University System.

The vision Midland Development Corporation and Texas Tech University Health Science Center have is to improve mental health services for kids and adults in the Permian Basin.

"This is a long overdue service needed for the West Texas area," said Dr. Tedd Mitchell, President of the Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center.

The funding from the MDC over the next eight years, which will total to $8.4 million, will bring psychiatrists to Midland. Funds will help kids navigate through the difficulties in life.

"We live in a world that is far more fast paced," said Mitchell. "We live in a world that is heavily driven by social media. We live in a world where the children have exposure to things we never had growing up."

Research from the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry shows that one out of five kids deal with mental health issues. Officials sadly believe these statistics trickle into recent tragedies at schools.

"Unfortunately, with what happened in Santa Fe just recently in Texas, it really illustrates the need for good mental and behavioral health for these students," said Mitchell.

This MDC agreement means more of these resources.

"We're going to have a clinic here," said Duncan. "We're going to have a resident physician, a psychiatrist, an assisted professor with residents."

More resources, officials believe, come at a good time for everyone involved.

Tech officials said Midland will be the center for the program. A clinic for the program is expected to be built across from Midland Memorial Hospital.

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