N.S. Health launches program to speed up access to mental health care – CBC

Service aims to connect patients with psychiatrists within 4 weeks of referrals

May 05, 2023

Nova Scotians have a new pathway to obtain faster treatment from mental health specialists.

An early intervention program, which launched on April 25, aims to provide patients with assessments from psychiatrists within a matter of weeks.

The rapid access and stabilization program is a partnership between the psychiatry department at Nova Scotia Health and Dalhousie University.

It is for patients 19 or older who need help managing a range of psychiatric disorders such as depression, anxiety or stress-related conditions.

“The goal is that nobody should really be waiting to see a psychiatrist and be on the wait-list for more than four weeks,” said Dr. Vincent Agyapong, who is the chief of psychiatry for Nova Scotia Health’s central zone and the head of Dalhousie University’s psychiatry department.

The most recent data on the Nova Scotia wait times website shows that patients with non-urgent issues waited an average of 78 days for a first appointment with a mental health clinician at the Halifax-Bayers Road clinic after an initial referral.

Read more: https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/nova-scotia/ns-health-launches-mental-health-care-program-1.6831939

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