Psychiatrist Shortage and Salary Growth

Rising demand for psychiatric services and provider shortages affecting the average psychiatrist salary.

Psychiatrists are enjoying a rise in their pay rates as facilities compete over fewer available psychiatrists.

Healthcare organizations like yours face:

  • Stronger demand for psychiatric services.
  • Shortage of psychiatric beds.
  • Uneven distribution of providers relative to patient needs.

Growing demand for mental health care.

Americans are increasingly seeking mental health care as awareness grows and stigma wanes. Nearly 1 in 5 Americans has some sort of mental health condition, according to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Service Administration.

The strain of shortages.

Communities across the United States are feeling the effects of psychiatric shortages. In fact, more than half of U.S. counties have no psychiatrists at all. It’s most acute in rural or poor areas that have trouble attracting the few psychiatrists available. Below, you can see that each state has Mental Health Professional Shortage Areas, which the government designates as underserved by psychiatrists and other mental health providers.

Access to mental health care in the U.S.

The map from the Kaiser Family Foundation compares access to mental health services within each state.

States are ranked on their access to care by evaluating: insurance, treatment, special education and providers. The quality and cost of insurance is considered in this state-by-state assessment of Mental Health Access to Care. States with high access to care are displayed in light blue. States with the lowest access to care are displayed in dark blue.

Total Number of Mental Health Care Professional Shortage Areas (HPSAs) by State, Source: Kaiser Family Foundation.

The number of available psychiatric beds in the U.S. has continued to decline over the past decade. This forces ER departments to become waiting rooms for patients who need psychiatric care, causing a strain on resources that can be felt hospital-wide. The National Council for Behavioral Health says there has been a 42% increase in the number of patients going to the emergency room for psychiatric care in the past few years.

Rising psychiatry salaries.

Psychiatrists’ salary average was $275,000 in 2020, according to Medscape’s Annual Compensation Report. They made 3% more than they did the previous year, even when some specialties saw compensation declines due to complications from the COVID-19 pandemic.

We expect these salary trends to continue as a large portion of today’s reach retirement age. More than 60 percent of practicing psychiatrists are over the age of 55.

In a physicians’ market, you need a team of expert physician recruiters on your side. Save yourself from lost revenue, reduction in available services, and burned out physicians.

Your patients need you. Jackson + Coker is here to help. We have an extensive network of board-certified and licensed psychiatrists ready to help your community.

How much revenue does your hospital lose without psychiatric coverage?

We created a customized calculator to show you based on your own census.

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Federal facts for you.

We are a Federal Supply Schedule Contract holder. 

Federal Supply Schedule (FSS) Contract: 36F79723D0086, Professional and Allied Healthcare Staffing, effective March 15, 2023, through March 14, 2028.

NAICS Codes:
  • 561320: Temporary help services. 
  • 621111: Offices of physicians. 
  • 621112: Offices of physicians, mental health specialists. 
  • 621399: Offices of all other miscellaneous health practitioners. 
  • 621330: Offices of mental health practitioners.


Once you and our client agree to move forward with your assignment, our privileging team will assist you and the client in gathering information required by the healthcare facility to grant clinical privileges.


We contact the facility’s Medical Service Office (MSO) for their application and requirements.


We will assist you by pre-populating the facility’s application and sending to the MSO.


We will assist the MSO by following up on requested items.


MSO will grant privileges based on your training and experience, and you will be able to start your assignment.

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Maggie Youmans

Senior Vice President, Sales

As Senior Vice President, Maggie oversees several key specialty divisions and adjacent teams. With a demonstrated history of leading teams and developing individuals across the organization, she is dedicated to inspiring, challenging and empowering associates to achieve their personal and professional goals. 

Maggie earned degrees in marketing and management focused on consumer economics from the University of Georgia, Terry College of Business. She enjoys traveling with her husband to visit different bed and breakfasts. Together, they have been able to see the beauty within their own backyard and across the country.

Connect with Maggie on LinkedIn.

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Anne Anderson

Executive Vice President

"I'm passionate about the locum tenens industry - we make a real difference in the lives of both our heroic healthcare providers and the patients they treat."

Anne has been at the forefront of the evolution of locum tenens for more than 35 years. She’s a respected leader with expertise in corporate operations, risk management, credentialing, and travel services. Before joining Jackson + Coker, she served as Executive Vice President at Medical Doctor Associates, part of Cross Country Healthcare. 

An ardent industry advocate, Anne served several years on the Board of the National Association of Locum Tenens Organizations (NALTO), including two years as president. 

Anne received a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Spring Hill College. She is also a PADI open water diver and enjoys scuba diving. 

Connect with Anne on LinkedIn.