OTTAWA, Oct. 17, 2012 /CNW/ - A need for continued collaboration, new partnerships and renewed vision in the mental health field are the main messages at the Mental Health Commission of Canada (MHCC) Leadership Assembly taking place from October 16-17 in Ottawa.
"There is an incredible wealth of knowledge in this field across Canada and around the world and it is always inspiring to have many of these people in the same room," says MHCC President and CEO Louise Bradley. "Coming together like this allows us to collectively recognize the work that has been done, and further identify the ways in which we need to join forces to tackle the many issues that remain."
The Commission convened experts in the mental health field who are discussing a broad range of topics including mental health services in primary health care, fighting stigma, expanding housing options, exploring suicide prevention, creating mentally healthy workplaces and investigating the importance of data.
Thoughts and ideas are also being presented by several keynote speakers including Mike Slade PhD, Professor of Health Services Research, Institute of Psychiatry, King's College, UK. He is addressing of the elements necessary to recovery. "If we are supporting hope, we must have people with lived experience in the workforce," he says.
Michael Decter, former Chair of the Canadian Institute for Health Information and the Health Council of Canada says it's time to make better use of existing evidence and to take advantage of the increased public focus on mental health. "Everybody in this country has a personal or family connection to mental illness and we all have an enormous stake in evolving a system that can do something about it," he says. Decter believes this is an opportune time to engage new funders and stakeholders in the Canadian community.
MHCC Chair Dr. David Goldbloom says there's no doubt the issue of mental health is gaining unprecedented attention. "This is a 100% non partisan issue," he says. "Mental health is on the agenda at the federal, provincial and territorial levels in a way that has not previously been the case. This is change."
The MHCC Leadership Assembly coincides with the half way mark in the MHCC's 10-year mandate. The Commission's recently-released Mental Health Strategy for Canada and its upcoming release of the National Standard for Psychological Health and Safety in the Workplace are a primary focus.
The two-day assembly also included the MHCC 5th Anniversary National Mental Health Awards to recognize some of the outstanding work underway in this field across Canada. Awards were handed out in the categories of Community Capacity, Partnership, Research Project, Social Innovation and Workplace. For a summary of the winning projects and organizations, please visit the following link:
Canadian initiatives honoured for contribution to mental health system
ABOUT THE MENTAL HEALTH COMMISSION OF CANADA
The Mental Health Commission of Canada is a catalyst for change. We are collaborating with hundreds of partners to change the attitudes of Canadians toward mental health problems and to improve services and support. Our goal is to help people who live with mental health problems and illnesses lead meaningful and productive lives. Together we spark change.
The views represented herein solely represent the views of the Mental Health Commission of Canada.
Production of this document is made possible through a financial contribution from Health Canada.
SOURCE: Mental Health Commission of Canada
Kyle Marr, Senior Communication Specialist
Mental Health Commission of Canada
Office: (403) 385‐4050
Cell: (587) 226‐8782