The evaluation and implementation of increased mental health resources, with minimized barriers, for patients of a local community hospital
St. Clair College
FUNDER: WE-SPARK Igniting Discovery Grant
Experts suggest that Canada is facing a mental health crisis, with the COVID-19 pandemic causing a significant increase in mental health cases. While more mental health resources are needed to meet the current demands, under the Canada Health Act, mental health care is only covered by publicly funded health insurance. While free mental health and substance services exist, they often have long wait lists and limited services that do not address the nuanced, intersectional needs of patients, and this is worsened in rural communities in Canada. In the rural community of Leamington, Ontario, Erie Shores HealthCare (ESHC) faces several challenges related to emergency department (ED) visits for individuals seeking mental health support. By analyzing trends in patient demographics and clinical characteristics of mental health vistis to ESHC, a better understanding of service gaps and training needs amongst ED staff will be determined, thereby improving outcomes for mental health patients in the ED.
Analyzing demographics and clinical characteristics of patients seeking mental health services at ESHC will provide insight into the specific needs of patients in this rural area. Highlighted trends will allow for preventative risk management through ED staff training and hospital program planning, ultimately guiding clinical practice in rural Canada.