MOBILE, Ala. (WKRG) — Mental health has been called an invisible killer that can hide until it’s too late. It may be hard to find help. A group of gulf coast healthcare providers met today to try to bridge gaps in care.

For the first time in two years, members of the Gulf Coast Mental Health Coalition met in person to talk about the topic of their conference: “mental health disparities in minority communities.”

“We have a task, mental health in Mobile, Baldwin and it’s getting worse,” said Sher Graham with the Gulf Coast Mental Health Coalition. “It wasn’t due to the pandemic, it’s due to the fact we haven’t taken the action steps we need.”

For Tuesday’s conference, the term “minority communities” covers more than just racial groups but any group with challenges like the poor, elderly or disabled.

“It’s very difficult sometimes to even go to the hospital, sometimes the hospital doesn’t know or have that information and today it’s an opportunity to pull together and say let’s do something,” said Dr. Bobbie Holt-Ragler.

One of the goals is to try and remove some of the stigmas when it comes to seeking help for mental health.

“People think they can self-manage and self-cope but the reality is the longer you do that the more complicated our problems become down the road,” said Kyle Platt with Alliance Health Center.

For more information on the Gulf Coast Mental Health Coalition, you can reach them via their Facebook Group or email Sher Graham.