Last updated February 2019
Numerous national studies and Presidential Commissions substantiate the magnitude of
emotional, behavioral, and developmental disorders in the nation's children and
adolescents. Consistently, 16-20% of the population of children and adolescents have some
disturbance and 5-9% have “extreme functional impairment.”
There are approximately 8,300 practicing child and adolescent psychiatrists in the US and over 15 million children and
adolescents in need of the special expertise of a child and adolescent psychiatrist. Despite
the availability of effective treatment, there are average delays of 8-10 years between the
onset of symptoms and intervention--critical developmental years in the life of a child. The
longer the lag time is between symptom onset and treatment, the more difficult and costly
mental illness is to treat and the greater the burden becomes on our public health system.
One significant reason for the delays in treatment is the lack of access to trained pediatric
mental health professionals.
Given the critical shortages, AACAP aims to increase the child and adolescent psychiatry
workforce. Provided below are resources that describe the current state of the workforce,
our nation's workforce needs, and the steps that are being taken to address the workforce
View Workforce Map by State / Counties
Last updated April 2018
Workforce Fact Sheet
Last updated March 2018.
Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Workforce: Solutions to Improve Access to Care
Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Workforce: A Critical Shortage and National Challenge
AACAP Workforce Issues Committee
Published December 2006
A Call to Action: Children Need Our Help!
Published November 1, 2002