Minister Hehr opens Nova Scotia Operational Stress Injury Clinic

Halifax area clinic serves Nova Scotia Veterans and their families

DARTMOUTH, NS, June 13, 2016 /CNW/ - The Honourable Kent Hehr, Minister of Veterans Affairs and Associate Minister of National Defence, today joined Lindsay Peach, Vice-President of Integrated Health for the Nova Scotia Health Authority, to officially open the Nova Scotia Operational Stress Injury Clinic.

Funded by Veterans Affairs Canada and operated in partnership with the Nova Scotia Health Authority, the Clinic, located in Dartmouth, provides full assessment, diagnosis and treatment services for Veterans, members of the Canadian Armed Forces, current and former members of the RCMP and their families who are living with operational stress injuries, also known as OSIs. Each OSI clinic has a team of psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers, mental health nurses and other specialized clinicians who understand the experience and unique needs of Veterans living with OSIs.

Prior to the opening of a temporary clinic in November 2015, Veterans residing in Nova Scotia received services through a satellite clinic or via tele-health.

Quick Facts

  • An operational stress injury is any persistent psychological difficulty resulting from operational duties performed while serving in the Canadian Armed Forces or as a member of the RCMP. The term is used to describe a broad range of problems which include diagnosed psychiatric conditions such as anxiety disorders, depression and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), as well as other conditions that may be less severe, but still interfere with daily functioning.
  • There are 11 OSI clinics across Canada. These include one residential OSI clinic at the Ste. Anne's Hospital and 10 outpatient clinics in Calgary, Edmonton, Fredericton, Dartmouth, London, Ottawa, Québec City, Sainte-Anne-de-Bellevue, Winnipeg and Vancouver. Additional satellite clinic sites provide services closer to locations where Veterans live.
  • VAC and DND have a network of 26 specialized mental health clinics where individuals can be served in person.
  • Veterans and former RCMP members and their families can receive immediate mental health counselling with a professional over the phone 24 hours a day, seven days a week, by calling the toll-free assistance line 1-800-268-7708 (TTD/TTY 1-800-567-5803).

Quotes

"Living with an OSI can be extremely difficult, not only for those who have it, but for their loved ones as well. This new clinic will make a real difference in the lives of those who receive treatment here. These proud Canadians need to know that when their service to our country has concluded, we are there for them. They need to know that they are not alone. And they need to know that we are going to do everything we can to help them get better. That is our ultimate goal."
The Honourable Kent Hehr, Minister of Veterans Affairs and Associate Minister of National Defence

"Nova Scotia Health Authority is honoured to be part of a service that can make a difference in the recovery and quality of life of Veterans and their loved ones. We have a rich military background in Nova Scotia and value our continued strong relationship with the RCMP. Staff and leaders of the Nova Scotia Health Authority worked together with Veterans Affairs Canada to create a welcoming, professional environment that is conducive to delivering excellent clinical care and support to Veterans and their families while, at the same time, helping to build the capacity of our teams to support other Nova Scotians."
Lindsay Peach, Vice President, Nova Scotia Health Authority

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SOURCE Veterans Affairs Canada

For further information: Contacts: Media Relations, Veterans Affairs Canada, 613-992-7468; Sarah McMaster, Press Secretary, Office of the Minister of Veterans Affairs, 613-996-4649; Media Relations, Nova Scotia Health Authority, 1-844-483-3344

RELATED LINKS
www.veterans.gc.ca

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