Mentally Disabled Forced to Wait to get Services

Thousands of mentally disabled people are not getting the help they need because of a state-wide backlog.

In the Panhandle, there are 600 people waiting to get in-home and independent living services. Those services are required by law. But mental health experts say the state does not have enough money to help the more than 100 thousand Texans waiting for care.

"Families are coping the best way they can. Whether they're accessing services through us like day service programs or through agencies like ADVO.  They're just doing what they can until their slot comes open," said Jim Womack of the Texas Panhandle Mental Health.

Advo Co. Incorporated provides services for the mentally disabled, including giving some of them a place to live and work. They can be reached at (806) 342-0600.

The Texas Panhandle Mental Health Mental Retardation organization can also help with resources while families wait for in-home and independent living services. They can be reached at (806) 358-1681.