The National Alliance on Mental Illness, a national leader in advocacy for those affected by mental health disorders, recently announced that Dr. Ujjwal Ramtekkar, a child psychiatrist at Compass Health, was 1 of 12 psychiatrists in the United States chosen to receive its “Exemplary Psychiatrist Award”.
Dr. Ramtekkar became just the 19th Missouri-based doctor to earn the distinction and the first since 2009.
“I accept this honor with a sense of pride and humbleness,” Dr. Ramtekkar said. “NAMI began when a few families gathered around a kitchen table to seek solutions to the lack of mental health services in their community.
“Unfortunately, too many regions of our state – and nation – continue to have insufficient options. My mission is to work on providing quality care and developing systems of care for those who have no access.”
Dr. Ramtekkar serves as the physician director for specialty clinics and Telehealth Outreach for Compass Health. He is also the general secretary and officer with the Greater St. Louis Council of Child and Adolescent Psychiatrists and a member of the Missouri chapter of American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist (AACAP).
NAMI honors members with the “Exemplary Psychiatrist” for substantial contributions to a NAMI affiliate or state organization. Honorees were recognized for their advocacy for access to care and research funding, community education programs or other NAMI priorities. Winners also provided comprehensive treatment to people living with mental illness including medical, rehabilitative and social needs or have educated people affected by a mental health concern.
“Dr. Ujjwal Ramtekkar is an outstanding child psychiatrist who goes the extra mile to help children and families in need,” said Darwyn Walker, Executive Director of NAMI St. Louis. “He is leading a major effort with the NAMI St. Louis Advocacy Committee to improve access to child psychiatry services in Missouri which is greatly needed.”
The Compass Health network is comprised of three main entities – Pathways Community Health, Crider Health Center and Royal Oaks Hospital. The agency serves more than 139,000 people annually across Missouri and Louisiana in the areas of behavioral health, alcohol and drug treatment, prevention services, supportive housing services, community-based behavioral health support, school-based behavioral health support, primary care and dental services.
Throughout the network, several clinics are designated as a Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC.) FQHC providers work with a medically underserved population, primarily individuals who receive Medicaid or are without insurance. For those individuals without insurance, services are offered on a sliding fee scale.