Medical Confidence Raises The Alarm On Mental Health in the National Post

 In English, In The Media

In December 2020, 40% of Canadians said our mental health had worsened since March 2020 according to a report from the Canadian Mental Health Association.

Canada has also seen a sharp rise in suicidality. In February 2020, 2.5% of Canadians thought about taking their own lives. One year later, in February 2021, 10% of Canadians are considering suicide. These figures are compounded by lack of care: 30% to 80% of people with mental illness issues don’t seek support for their health from anyone.

Medical Confidence President and Founder Angela Johnson explores the coming epidemic of mental health in Canada in a February 2021 opinion piece in the National Post. In the article, Ms. Johnson highlights stark figures:

“In the best of times, Canadians spend just 7.2 per cent of our total health budget on mental health, even though it accounts for 23 per cent of our disease burden and over 30 per cent of all corporate disability claims and medical absences… 2.3 million Canadians live in areas with no full-time psychiatrists at all.”

So what can stop the full force of our inevitable mental health epidemic?

Patient navigation, a concept born in 1990. Dr. Harold Freeman, a cancer surgeon working at the Harlem Hospital, pioneered the idea, which is used worldwide, including in every province in Canada, to help cancer patients quickly get the right treatment. The result at Harlem Hospital? Five-year survival rates climbed from 39% before patient navigators began their work, to 70% after.

Ms. Johnson proposes that patient navigation should play a major role in driving efficiencies in the Canadian mental healthcare system.

Read the full article on the future of mental illness in Canada:

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Mental Health with Mike Stafford