Province Announces Expansion of Youth Mental Health Services

January 19, 2016

New Intervention and Outreach Team Will Help Teens, Families with Complex Needs: Minister Wight

The Manitoba government will invest more than $1 million to provide children, youth and their families with greater access to mental health services as part of the province’s cross-departmental Child and Youth Mental Health Strategy, Children and Youth Opportunities Minister Melanie Wight announced today.

“Investing in mental health-care support for young people helps children and youth achieve their potential, reduces stress for families and strengthens our entire community,” said Minister Wight. “Today’s announcement reflects our continuing commitment to ensuring quality mental health services are available for youth and families where and when they need them.”

The new provincial investments include:
• investing in a new, clinically trained, community-based intervention and outreach team (IOT) that will provide long-term, integrated clinical and service supports for children and youth up to 15 years of age who have highly complex needs, along with supports for their families; and
• increasing the capacity of teen mental health care at the Elmwood Teen Clinic, Sisler Teen Clinic, Access NorWest and Mount Carmel Clinic, as well as resource support for Youville Teen Clinic and Aboriginal Health and Wellness Centre.

“We regularly witness the mental health issues of youth in our community and now will be able to better address their important needs,” said Nancy Heinrichs, executive director, NorWest Co-op Community Health. “NorWest is pleased to work with partners such as Aboriginal Health and Wellness, Access River East/Elmwood Teen Clinic, Mount Carmel Clinic and Youville Centre to increase mental health supports for youth across the city through five teen clinics, which together help thousands of youth, every year.”

The new funding follows the 2015 release of the Office of the Children’s Advocate’s Safe for Today report, which recommended Manitoba Family Services, Manitoba Health, Healthy Living and Seniors and the Healthy Child Manitoba Office, under the direction of the Healthy Child Committee of Cabinet (HCCC), work together to improve accessible and timely clinical assessment strategies and services for children and youth with complex needs.

The minister noted the Healthy Child Committee of Cabinet is the only cabinet committee in North America dedicated to the overall physical, mental, emotional, cognitive and spiritual development of children, youth and their families.

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