Government of Canada announces close to $24 million for drug treatment initiatives across Canada

The Honourable Kerry-Lynne Findlay, Minister of National Revenue and Member of Parliament for Delta-Richmond East, and Susan Truppe, Parliamentary Secretary for Status of Women and Member of Parliament for London North Centre, today announced on behalf of the Honourable Rona Ambrose, Minister of Health, almost $24 million of funding over two years to develop innovative approaches that strengthen and improve substance abuse treatment systems across Canada which will help individuals living with drug addictions and their families through the treatment and recovery process.

Today’s two-year investment comes from the Government of Canada’s National Anti-Drug Strategy and will support 14 treatment initiatives to be delivered through provinces, territories and other key stakeholders. These initiatives will strengthen and improve substance abuse treatment across Canada through increased collaboration and information sharing among treatment providers so that people in need can receive the best support possible to get them on the road to recovery. Some of these initiatives will also address the treatment of prescription drug abuse, which has emerged as one of the leading public health and safety concerns in Canada.

The Government’s National Anti-Drug Strategy focuses on preventing illicit drug use and prescription drug abuse, treating drug dependency and combating the production and distribution of illicit drugs. Over the past several months, the Government of Canada has taken a number of steps to specifically address prescription drug abuse, including:

  • launching a national marketing campaign to equip parents with the information and tools needed to talk with their teenagers about the harmful effects of prescription drug abuse;
  • providing $13.5 million over five years to enhance prevention and treatment services for prescription drug abuse in First Nations communities;
  • enhancing the Canadian Research Initiative in Substance Misuse (CRISM), a national research network aimed at improving the health of Canadians living with substance misuse;
  • announcing nearly $8 million to support projects to improve prescriber education and to support the development of a national approach to the monitoring and surveillance of prescription drugs; and,
  • announcing nearly $13 million over five years to increase the number of annual pharmacy inspections carried out by Health Canada.

Quick Facts

  • The Health Portfolio invests approximately $130 million a year to address addictions and drug abuse in Canada under the National Anti-Drug Strategy. Included in this investment is funding to provinces, territories and other key stakeholders to develop innovative approaches that strengthen and improve substance abuse treatment systems across Canada.
  • The misuse and abuse of illicit and prescription drugs can lead to addiction, overdose and death. The impact on individuals, families and communities is often devastating.
  • In 2013, 22% of Canadians aged 15 and older reported using a psychoactive prescription drug. Of these, 2% (about 146,000) reported abusing the drug for non-medical purposes.
  • The 2012 Canadian Alcohol and Drug Use Monitoring Survey indicated that close to 1 million youth, aged 15 to 24 years, reported having used prescription drugs in the past 12 months.  The same survey showed that approximately 410,000 Canadians reported abusing prescription drugs.


“Drug abuse and addiction can have a devastating impact on individuals, families and communities. That is why our Government is committed to supporting treatment programs that help those struggling with addiction to safely recover and begin leading healthier, drug-free lives. Today’s investment will also help provinces and territories to strengthen existing addiction treatment systems, so Canadians can be assured of receiving the most effective care possible.”

The Honourable Rona Ambrose, Minister of Health

“Investments in treatment help improve the lives of people struggling with addiction and drug abuse, as well as the lives of their families and children. There is a great deal of work in this area happening across the country, and our Government will continue to support efforts at the community and regional levels in prevention, treatment and recovery from addiction.”

The Honourable Kerry-Lynne D. Findlay, P.C., Q.C., MP for Delta—Richmond East and Minister of National Revenue

“Drug abuse and addiction are very real and widespread public health issues that touch many communities. While the paths to recovery are often hard, the benefits for individuals and families are immeasurable. Our Government is committed to help eliminate barriers to recovery and support treatment for those struggling with drug abuse and addiction. ”

Susan Truppe, Parliamentary Secretary for Status of Women and Member of Parliament for London North Centre

“Providing the best care for Canadians with substance use disorders requires collaboration among multiple levels of government and numerous sectors such as health care, mental health, education, social services and criminal justice. We applaud the progress being made under the Government’s National Anti-Drug Strategy. The funding provided to the provinces and territories will support the implementation of evidence-informed practices, evaluation of what works and multi-jurisdictional linkages — all vital components to improving the quality, accessibility and range of addiction treatment services, respectful of regional and cultural differences. Through DTFP funding, CCSA has led initiatives such as the creation of an online forum to facilitate knowledge exchange and collaboration across the country; established the National Treatment Indicators, which provide a pan-Canadian picture of service provision and use; hosted the first-ever National Summit on Addiction Recovery; and is currently developing clinical pathways to make treatment more effective for youth and the elderly needing care for their prescription drug addiction. Today’s announcement demonstrates the government’s ongoing commitment to improving the care of Canadians suffering with substance use disorders.”

Rita Notarandrea, Chief Executive Officer (interim), Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse
Related Products

Government of Canada support for drug treatment projects across Canada

Associated Links

– 30 –


Michael Bolkenius
Office of the Honourable Rona Ambrose
Federal Minister of Health
(613) 957-0200

Media Relations:
Health Canada
(613) 957-2983

Public Inquiries:
(613) 957-2991
1-866 225-0709


NationTalk Partners & Sponsors Learn More