STRATFORD, PE, Sept. 4, 2019 /CNW/ - Timely access to mental health supports and services is vital to improving mental health and overall well-being. The Government of Canada is committed to ensuring the best possible support is available to Veterans, Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) and Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) members.
Today, the Honourable Lawrence MacAulay, Minister of Veterans Affairs and Associate Minister of National Defence, joined the Honourable Dennis King, Premier of Prince Edward Island (PEI) and Dr. Julie Devlin, Manager, Operational Stress Injury Clinic, Horizon Health Network to announce a new OSI Satellite Service Site in Stratford, Prince Edward Island.
OSI Clinics and OSI Satellite Service Sites provide specialized, evidence-based assessment, treatment and support services for operational stress injuries. Staff at these sites are trained in treating a range of mental health conditions such as post-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety, depression and insomnia. Services, such as one-on-one therapy sessions and group sessions, are provided to Veterans, CAF and RCMP members.
Veterans Affairs Canada funds New Brunswick's Horizon Health Network to operate the Fredericton OSI Clinic. This clinic will deliver health care services in English and French to eligible individuals in New Brunswick, as well as Newfoundland and Labrador and PEI. The Prince Edward Island OSI Satellite Service Site will be a satellite of the Fredericton OSI Clinic that will address increasing demand for these services in PEI. Based on an agreement between Horizon Health Network and Health PEI, a team of clinicians will operate out of a new space to provide assessment and treatment to clients in need of specialized mental health services.
"With the Satellite Site in Stratford, we will bring support, treatment and educational programs closer to where Veterans live in Prince Edward Island. Our Government's goal is to ensure all Veterans and their family members have access to the services and support they need, when and where they need it and to support them with the care, compassion and respect that they deserve."
The Honourable Lawrence MacAulay, Minister of Veterans Affairs and Associate Minister of National Defence
"These men and women dedicate their lives to serving and protecting us, and it is our responsibility to work together to ensure that we are there to support them with compassion and care, when they need it, right here at home. This is the right thing to do, and we are so pleased that we can support Islanders in a way that ensures our veterans, armed forces and RCMP members have a pathway to mental health services that is accessible."
The Honourable Dennis King, Premier of Prince Edward Island
"Horizon Health Network is both pleased and honoured to share our expertise in operational stress management to people of Prince Edward Island. Since opening our OSI clinic in Fredericton in 2008 our experienced clinicians have been providing mental health assessments and treatments to clients and their families who are suffering from work related stress and trauma, and many of these clients were from P.E.I. With the opening of Horizon's satellite site, Islanders will now have the support they need in their own province. This alone will help in their recovery and rehabilitation – and that's what matters most."
Dr. Julie Devlin, Manager, Operational Stress Injury Clinic, Horizon Health Network
- 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.
- There are 11 OSI Clinics across Canada and 8 OSI Satellite Services sites. The Network continues to grow. More OSI Satellite Service Sites will open across the country, as needed. The last OSI Satellite Service Site to open was in Saskatoon in September 2018.
- The Fredericton OSI Clinic is already offering services to PEI residents. Between May 2008 and July 2019, the Fredericton OSI Clinic served 82 clients from PEI. Of these, 78% were Veterans, 2% were CAF members and 20% were active RCMP members. There are an estimated 4,000 Veterans in PEI.
- Operational Stress Injury Clinics are operated by the provinces with funding from Veterans Affairs Canada. Veterans, CAF and RCMP members have access, through referral, to an interdisciplinary team of psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers, mental health nurses, and other experts who provide them with specialized assessment and treatment services.
SOURCE Veterans Affairs Canada
For further information: Media Relations, Veterans Affairs Canada, 613-992-7468, [email protected]; John Embury, Director of Communications, Office of the Minister of Veterans Affairs, [email protected]