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Revista Ecuatoriana de Neurología

On-line version ISSN 2631-2581Print version ISSN 1019-8113


WONG-AYOUB, Joffre A. et al. Psychiatrists Available In The Ecuadorian Public Health System And Psychiatry Residency Programs In Ecuador - A Cross-Sectional Analysis. Rev Ecuat Neurol [online]. 2022, vol.31, n.2, pp.59-64. ISSN 2631-2581.


In 2008, Ecuador’s mental health profile displayed deficiencies due to the lack of psychiatrists and psychiatry residency programs. The same year, access to universal health care, was instituted as a right in the Constitution. There are no studies on the Public Health System’s capacity to provide mental health services, hence an updated analysis of the number of psychiatrists and psychiatry training programs available is required.


To determine the number of psychiatrists available through the Public Health System and to calculate the ratio of psychiatrist per 10,000 population; to establish the number of residency programs available.


Cross-sectional analysis of the data available from the Ecuadorian Public Health System and the Higher Education Council of Ecuador. Ratios were calculated using data from the National Institute of Statistics and Censuses.


Ecuador’s psychiatrists ratio is 0.08:10,000 and the adjusted ratio (psychiatrists and psychologists) is 0.65:10,000. The Public Health System has 138 psychiatrists, concentrated in Pichincha (n=51) and Guayas (n=27). Three provinces had no psychiatrists available. There are two psychiatry training programs in Quito.


Ecuadorian Public Healthcare holds a shortage of psychiatrists which inhibit the minimum ideal ratio fulfillment, along with a noticeable lack of psychiatric training programs availability.

Keywords : public health; mental health; psychiatry; Ecuador.

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