TODAY, April 17th, 6:30 pm
Port Hawkesbury, Nova Scotia
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Clara's Big Ride for Bell Let's Talk
About Laura Burke
Laura is a drama therapist, mental health advocate, peer support worker, spoken word and theatre artist, and researcher. It is her passion to work with persons who are struggling, and to help them to find their own inner resources and self-healing potential through the arts.During the second year of her Masters in Drama Therapy practicum at the Douglas Psychiatric Hospital in Montreal, Laura facilitated drama therapy groups and individual sessions with teens and adults with early psychosis. Her first year practicum population was at a school, working with children and youth with visual impairments, developmental and behavioral issues.Laura also has seven years of experience as a Peer Support worker at Laing House and at the Schizophrenia Society of Nova Scotia. She is also a faculty member at the Atlantic Contemplative Centre and is training in Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, and Developmental Transformations, a form of improvisational drama therapy.She has recently begun working with youth at the Nova Scotia Early Psychosis Program, and she is bringing drama therapy into an arts-based research project at Dalhousie on student peer mental health, with the goal of creating an ethnodrama.
Lisa Corra, Peer Support Facilitator, Schizophrenia Society of Nova Scotia, by phoning 465-2601 (toll free 1-800-465-2601) or sending an email to email@example.com; or
Vince Daigle, Peer Specialist, Healthy Minds Cooperative, by phoning 404-3504, or sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Because NSEPP is located in Halifax, within the largest of the Nova Scotia health regions; Capital Health, the program provides direct clinical services to residents of the Capital Health district.Image credit
Referrals to NSEPP can be made by anyone, including mental health care professionals, family physicians, community agencies, educators and school counselors, family members, friends and any young person who suspects they may be suffering from a first episode of psychosis.
Criteria for referral of individuals who reside in the Capital Health district are:
- Any individual between the ages of 15-35 who is suspected of experiencing or has been diagnosed with a first episode of psychosis, and
- Has been treated for less than 6 months with an anti-psychotic medication, and
If you or someone you know meets these criteria please contact the NSEPP immediately at (902) 473-2976.
- At the time of referral has had active, untreated psychosis for less than one year.
What can I expect if I refer someone who resides in the Capital Health district?
- The intake coordinator from NSEPP will usually contact the person making the referral within 1- 2 working days after NSEPP receives the referral. The purpose of this contact is to obtain information necessary to decide if the person being referred meets the criteria for the NSEPP program and to also determine the urgency of the referral.
- All information regarding new referrals is presented by the intake coordinator to the NSEPP multidisciplinary team at their weekly meeting. At that meeting the NSEPP team will determine if the individual referred meets the criteria for the NSEPP program. If a referral meets criteria, NSEPP endeavours to assess those individuals within 1-2 weeks.
- Priority for appointments for initial assessments will be determined by the NSEPP team based on their assessment of the degree of urgency.
- Urgent referrals are assessed, whenever possible, within 1-2 working days.
- The individual making the referral to the NSEPP will be notified of the date of the assessment appointment and, after the assessment is completed, will be notified of the outcome.
- If it is determined that an individual referred to NSEPP does not meet criteria for the program, the individual making the referral will be notified by the intake coordinator and will be provided with information regarding referral to other appropriate mental health services.
Under the provincial service delivery model developed by the Nova Scotia Department of Health and as one of the Dalhousie University Department of Psychiatry clinical academic programs, NSEPP provides clinical consultation for residents of the Maritime provinces who reside outside the Capital Health district.
Criteria for referral of individuals who reside in the Maritime Provinces outside of the Capital Health district:
- NSEPP only accepts referrals for consultation from health care professionals including any mental health care professional or family physician, and
- Any individual between the age of 15-35 who is experiencing early psychosis (within the first 5 years of the onset of psychosis), may be referred for a consultation regarding diagnosis and/or treatment.
NSEPP does not provide ongoing clinical services to individuals who reside outside of the Capital Health district.
What can I expect if I refer an individual who resides in the Maritime Provinces outside of the Capital Health district?
- The intake coordinator from NSEPP will usually contact the person making the referral within 1 week after NSEPP receives the referral. The purpose of this contact is to obtain more detailed information regarding the reasons for the referral for consultation from the NSEPP.
- All information regarding consultations is presented by the intake coordinator to the NSEPP multidisciplinary team at their weekly meeting. At that meeting the NSEPP team will determine if the consultation referral to NSEPP meets the program criteria for consultation from NSEPP.
- If a consultation referral meets the NSEPP criteria, the NSEPP endeavours to assess all individuals referred for a consultation within 4 weeks after NSEPP receives the referral
- The individual making the referral to the NSEPP will be notified of the date of the consultation appointment. Once the consultation is completed, the individual making the referral will receive a written report.
- If it is determined that an individual referred to NSEPP does not meet criteria for referral for a consultation from NSEPP the individual making the referral will be notified by the intake coordinator and will be provided with information regarding referral to other appropriate mental health services.
At this time, persons referred for a consultation with the NSEPP must be willing to travel to Halifax/Dartmouth Nova Scotia for an assessment
To make a referral for a consultation please contact (902) 473-2976.
Mental Health Crisis vs. Psychiatric Emergency
A mental health crisis is:
Thoughts of suicide, distorted or psychotic thinking, intense anxiety, depression, unable to cope.
- an acute disturbance of thinking, mood, behaviour or social relationship that requires an immediate intervention;
- which involves an element of unpredictability, usually accompanied by a lack of response to social controls; and
- which may be defined as a crisis by the client, the family or other members of the community.*
A mental health crisis does not necessarily require hospital-based assessment/triage services and can be effectively supported in the community by a team of service providers.
A psychiatric emergency is when a person is an immediate danger to him/herself due to compromised thinking and/or judgement. A psychiatric emergency requires hospital-based treatment services – Call 911 or attend a local emergency department.
* Consistent with B.C.’s Mental Health Reform Crisis Response / Emergency Services
Going through the mental health system can be like trying to find your way through a maze. Navigation is a service that the Healthy Minds Cooperative provides that helps guide people living with a mental illness, and their families, to connect with support services in the community.
The Navigator can answer your questions and concerns about:
- Services in the community
- Support groups
- Programs and workshops
- Referral Services
- Web-based resources
For more information about navigation, please call (902) 404-3504 ext. 201 or email email@example.com.
Schizophrenia Society of Nova Scotia
Room B-23, Purdy Building
P.O. Box 1004
Dartmouth, Nova Scotia
A loved one’s mental health problem or illness often impacts family, friends and supporters. Caring for a person living with a mental illness often creates emotional, physical, financial and social burdens for caregivers. The Mental Health Commission of Canada has created guidelines for policy makers and service providers that seek to recognize and support family caregivers’ needs, including recommendations on services and supports caregivers find useful.
It’s time to get personal about mental illness.
1 in 4 people in the world lives with some form of mental illness, and yet, the stigma remains. In 2013, several speakers stepped to the TED stage to share their personal stories of mental illness. Eleanor Longden explained what it’s like to have voices in her head. (Read her TED Book, Learning from the Voices in my Head.) Kevin Breel took us inside his world, giving “confessions of a depressed comic.” Just this week, Andrew Solomon spoke poetically about his experience with depression, and how he sees it a secret many people share. Punctuating it all — a talk from Thomas Insel [below], the director of the National Institute of Mental Health, on how moving from the term “mental disorders” to “brain disorders” could open up research possibilities.