Solving Mental Health Problems by Turning Research Into Action - Government of Canada announces $4.4 million to improve mental health of Canadians

    WINNIPEG, July 18 /CNW Telbec/ - Funding of $4.4 million from the
Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) was announced today by Steven
Fletcher, MP for Charleswood-St.James-Assiniboia and Parliamentary Secretary
for Health, on behalf of Tony Clement, Minister of Health. This funding will
support three research teams investigating how to improve the application of
mental health research. The Mental Health Commission of Canada is contributing
$250,000 to one of the projects. The announcement was made at St. Boniface
General Hospital.
    "Thousands of Canadians and their families deal with the negative effects
of mental health problems," said Mr. Fletcher. "The Government is committed to
funding research that will help ensure that these Canadians have access to the
best mental healthcare services possible."
    Mr. Fletcher was joined by Dr. Richard Brière, Assistant Director, CIHR's
Institute of Neurosciences, Mental Health and Addiction. "CIHR and the Mental
Health Commission of Canada have both identified a pressing need for mental
health research in Canada," said Dr. Brière. "This funding is essential
because, ultimately, the results will help health service providers, educators
and others meet the multifaceted needs of people who suffer from mental health
    "As a catalyst in the field of mental health, the Commission is pleased
to support a research team from Winnipeg, the first in Canada, to look at how
young adults who suffer from mental health problems make complex decisions in
the absence of critical information and helpful decision-making aids," said
Mr. Michael Howlett, President and CEO, Mental Health Commission of Canada.
"This research is particularly important in shaping public knowledge about
important mental health problems."
    The three funded research projects underwent a rigorous peer-review
process before being approved and exemplify CIHR's comprehensive,
problem-based approach to funding excellence in health research. The principal
investigators and their respective projects are being funded for a period of
five years:

    - John Walker (University of Manitoba) will examine how we can support
      young adults with anxiety and depression to obtain effective forms of
    - Melanie Barwick (The Hospital for Sick Children) will develop and
      evaluate an innovative implementation model to bring evidence based
      practices into both the children's mental health and education sectors.
    - Alison Niccols (McMaster University) will work with addiction centres'
      staff and researchers to ensure women with substance use issues and
      their children receive the best services/treatments.

    With this funding, these research teams will develop strategies and
guidelines to address mental health issues, and will strive to change
perceptions and attitudes towards mental health conditions.

    The Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) is the Government of
Canada's agency for health research. CIHR's mission is to create new
scientific knowledge and to catalyze its translation into improved health,
more effective health services and products, and a strengthened Canadian
health care system. Composed of 13 Institutes, CIHR provides leadership and
support to more than 11,000 health researchers and trainees across Canada.

    The Mental Health Commission of Canada (MHCC) is a non-profit
organization created to focus national attention on mental health issues. It
is funded by the federal government but operates at arm's length from all
orders of government. The Commission's objective is to enhance the health and
social outcomes for Canadians living with mental health problems and
illnesses. The Commission was announced by Prime Minister Stephen Harper in
response to one of the recommendations in the report by the Standing Committee
on Social Affairs, Science and Technology, entitled "Out of the Shadows at
Last." Former Senator Michael Kirby was Chair of the Senate Committee at the
time the report was released.

    Ce document est également disponible en français.

For further information:

For further information: David Coulombe, CIHR Media Relations, (613)
941-4563,; Mike Pietrus, Director of
Communications, Mental Health Commission of Canada, (403) 620-6154,

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