New digital platform improves response, safety for people in crisis in Port Moody

March 6, 2024

PORT MOODY – People experiencing a mental-health or addiction emergency in Port Moody will receive improved response from police officers with HealthIM, an innovative, evidence-based digital tool paving the way for better crisis support in B.C.

“Police officers in our province have seen first-hand the impacts and challenges when responding to mental-health or substance-use crisis-related calls,” said Mike Farnworth, Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General. “We are helping officers to support people in crisis with HealthIM, a risk-screening tool that will help them to de-escalate and better navigate the complexities of mental-health emergencies.”

HealthIM is a digital public-safety system designed to improve emergency police response in mental-health and addiction crisis situations, increasing safety for first responders, health-care staff and the person in crisis. The system will support a better interaction between the person in crisis and the responding police officer by enabling the officer to better understand the reason for the person’s behaviour.

“Collaborative and co-ordinated care in assessing and responding to individuals in crisis can save lives and create safer working conditions for first responders,” said Jennifer Whiteside, Minister of Mental Health and Addictions. “Thanks to this new technology, police can work with health-care professionals to make assessments and respond faster with more information, ensuring appropriate support to those in need. This advancement is an important step in our journey toward a more caring and efficient mental-health and addictions system of care.”

The responding officer will be guided through a series of questions to help facilitate a better assessment of the person in crisis. Their communication with health-care partners will also be enhanced as the system will help them use the same clinical language and will provide the information doctors and nurses need at hand, immediately. Other benefits include:

  • the assessment of risk of harm to self or others, which helps determine the best way that person can receive help;
  • provides client-specific safety and de-escalation information to facilitate a trauma-informed response, leading to better outcomes;
  • alerts health-care partners to incoming persons escorted by emergency responders, and flags instances of weapon possession and/or violent behaviour; and
  • a risk of harm-analysis history can be developed over time, providing insight into how to assist those with previous police contact.

HealthIM is advancing the Safer Communities Action Plan’s goal of creating safe, healthy communities for everyone. The plan improves co-ordination between law enforcement, community service organizations, justice system actors, health providers and people who are recovering from addiction and mental-health challenges in a collaborative, co-ordinated approach to address the issues people are seeing in their communities.

The Safer Communities Action Plan aligns with recommendations from several community safety reports, including the Special Committee on Reforming the Police Act and the BC First Nations Justice Strategy.


Rick Glumac MLA for Port Moody-Coquitlam –

“When people are in distress because of a mental-health or substance-use emergency and they call the police, we need to take the right steps to make sure they are safe and connected to the care they need. That’s why we are implementing HealthIM as a resource for police in Port Moody to use that will improve emergency response, while providing people the services they need, when they need them.”

Meghan Lahti, mayor, Port Moody –

“As mayor and chair of the Port Moody Police Board, I am pleased to welcome this project to our police department. It is my belief that implementing this project will help foster community engagement and collaboration in addressing mental-health challenges, leading to a more supportive and resilient community.”

David Fleugel, chief constable, Port Moody Police Department –

“All police in B.C. can now enjoy the opportunity to leverage this technology. The Port Moody Police Department are very proud to now be using HealthIM. Police all over this province interact, on a daily basis, with people who suffer from mental-health challenges or substance-abuse challenges and we know this tool will assist our front-line officers to create efficiencies and better outcomes for those who come into contact with police.”

Anita Furlan, vice-president of the BC Association of Chiefs of Police (BCACP) –

“Law-enforcement officers frequently serve as the first line of response to emergency mental-health crises. HealthIM offers a trauma-informed response to facilitate prompt referrals to appropriate resources and to improve crisis outcomes. Ultimately, this system not only safeguards the public, police, medical staff and individuals in crisis, but also fosters a safer and more supportive community for all.”

Learn More:

To learn more about the Safer Communities Action Plan, please visit:

To learn more about HealthIM, visit:

A backgrounder follows.

Contact:Ministry of Public Safety and Solicitor General
Media Relations
250 213-3602


HealthIM will launch on Thursday, March 7, 2024, in the Port Moody Police Department.

  • The Delta Police Department, Surrey RCMP and Prince Geroge RCMP have independently implemented HealthIM as a resource for police.
  • Since the implementation of HealthIM in 2019, the Delta Police Department (DPD) has noted improved wait times in hospitals.
    • Prior to implementation, the average wait time for DPD officers at hospitals was 130 minutes.
    • In 2022, the average wait time was 110 minutes, down by seven minutes from 2021, and down 20 minutes when compared to pre-implementation.
    • In 2023, the average wait time was 121 minutes.
    • The saved staffing hours have resulted in improved service to the remainder of Delta, with increased availability for other calls for service.
  • HealthIM is available in Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Ontario.
  • Overall, the system has contributed to a 46% decrease in apprehensions, 39% reduction in hospital wait times and a 37% increase in hospital admission rates.

Contact:Ministry of Public Safety and Solicitor General
Media Relations
250 213-3602


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