Department of Psychiatry

Province announces increased funding for post-secondary mental health services

On May 3rd, 2017, Deb Matthews, Minister of Advanced Education and Skills Development, and Dr. Eric Hoskins, Minister of Health and Long-Term Care, were at the University of Toronto highlighting  $6 million in additional funding for three years to support mental health services and supports at Ontario’s colleges and universities. Dr. Andrea Levinson, Psychiatrist-in-Chief at Health and Wellness, The University of Toronto, thanked the ministers and provided an address around the mental health needs on campus. The funding will enable every college and university to hire a mental health worker who provides direct service to students.

Three quarters of lifetime mental disorders have their first onset during the postsecondary education age of 18-24 years. Eighty-three percent of Ontario’s Emerging Adults participate in postsecondary education. Our campuses are the workplace and also the playground of our young adult population.

The convergence of emerging adults on our campuses provides an exceptional opportunity to facilitate early intervention and support for this key subgroup of our population, our adults of tomorrow, filled with promise, talent and a bright future. Current wait times within community and hospital-based mental health services are such that many students would be at serious risk of dropping out of school before they make it to their assessment. Post-secondary students require timely and flexible access to supports, as the school year has real timely demands.

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