Ontario Launching New Mobile Mental Health and Addictions Clinic in Huron–Bruce and Perth–Wellington
Connecting people to high-quality, low-barrier mental health and addictions services in underserved regions of the province
NEWS June 13th, 2023
GODERICH — The Ontario government is connecting people to timely and convenient mental health and addictions services in the Huron–Bruce and Perth–Wellington regions by launching a new mobile mental health and addictions clinic in partnership with Medavie to deliver timely care in the community.
“The launch of the Mobile Mental Health and Addictions Clinic is welcomed news for our local rural communities,” said Lisa Thompson, MPP of Huron Bruce. “Removing barriers to care for mental health services is paramount when it comes to the recovery and overall wellbeing of those facing these challenges – no matter where they call home. The fact that we can now provide expert supports to people where they are and when they are at their most vulnerable – and in a timely manner – is invaluable,” added Thompson.
The new mobile clinic will make it easier to access high-quality mental health and addictions services by bringing the care closer to home – in the community. Mobile clinics operate by having a clinical team that travels between communities, reducing the distance that people in rural communities have to go to find care and serving more people in the process.
“Individuals living in rural and underserved communities often face additional barriers connecting to the mental health and addictions care they need, and we are taking action to remove them,” said Michael Tibollo, Associate Minister of Mental Health and Addictions. “This new clinic will offer clients and families in the region low-barrier access to high-quality mental health and addictions services close to home, in a discrete and fully supported setting.”
The clinic will have a multidisciplinary team which includes a trained social worker and registered nurse or nurse practitioner who can deliver a wide range of services, including intake and brief services, referrals to existing services, and psychiatric support and follow-up.
The team will also have extensive knowledge of the programs and services that exist in the region, allowing them to help guide people to the most appropriate care based on their individual needs. It will operate 8-10 hours per day, five days per week and will be in set locations identified through consultation with the community.
As part of Your Health: A Plan for Connected and Convenient Care, the government is making it easier and faster for individuals of all ages to connect to mental health and addictions support by building on the Roadmap to Wellness. With this new clinic, Ontario will have seven mobile mental health and addictions clinics supporting individuals and families living in rural and remote communities by bringing these much-needed services directly to them.
“Working on the frontlines of health care, we know the toll that mental health and addictions issues can have on individuals, families and communities,” said Erik Sande, President, Medavie Health Services. “Now, more than ever, we need to find ways to increase access to mental health and addictions supports to ensure Ontarians can receive high quality care when and where they need it. We look forward to collaborating with the Ontario government and community stakeholders to deliver an effective mobile mental health and addictions clinic that supplements existing local services while creating a new pathway to care.”
- To date, five mobile mental health and addictions clinics have been launched and are delivering services to communities in Peterborough, Kenora, Niagara/Haldimand/Norfolk, Manitoulin Island and Hastings Prince Edward County.
- In 2020, Ontario released a strategy to build a world-class mental health and addictions system – Roadmap to Wellness: A Plan to Build Ontario’s Mental Health and Addictions System. Supported by a commitment to invest $3.8 billion over ten years, Roadmap is adding capacity to meet demand, filling gaps in the care continuum, and creating a provincial infrastructure for a mental health and addictions continuum of care that connects primary, community, and acute care to better wrap around the needs of people with mental health and addictions issues.
- In Budget 2023, Ontario is building on its historic $3.8 billion investment by providing an additional $425 million over three years. This investment will provide community-based mental health and addictions service providers funded by the Ministry of Health, with a five per cent increase in base funding.
- To make it faster and easier for young people to connect to mental health and substance use support, primary care, social services, and more, Ontario is also expanding the number of Youth Wellness Hubs by adding eight new hubs to the 14 that are already operating across the province.
- Since 2019-20, the government has flowed $525 million in new base funding for mental health and addictions services and supports. This funding is supporting a range of services, including child and youth mental health, community-based addictions services, supportive housing, mental health and justice and Indigenous mental health and addictions.