A message from Dr. Catherine Zahn, President & CEO, CAMHVISION2020: tomorrow.today
, CAMH’s new Strategic Plan
, is designed to unlock our full potential as an academic teaching hospital. The plan envisions fully-integrated clinical care, research and education, as well as a contribution to building a better system – all aimed at serving people affected by mental illness and addictions.
One of the ways we’ll do this is to reorganize the way CAMH delivers clinical care, to make our services more patient-centred and family-sensitive. CAMH is moving from our current nine-program structure to a configuration that includes four care centres organized around pathways that reflect the acuity and complexity of need for each individual and taking into account both clinical care needs and the social determinants of health for our patients.
In doing this we will work to improve access to care and transitions for patients and enhance integration of treatment for those people with co-occurring mental illness and addiction. We will more fully align research and education with our clinical work to improve the treatment of patients and to ensure maximum benefit for the people we serve now, and for those who will need our services in the future.
This work has begun. A new clinical leadership structure is in place with focused roles and accountability. In the fall, we will be moving forward with a new configuration of clinical activities at CAMH that will include:
The Access & Transitions Program
that will help create a CAMH that’s more transparent and understandable to our stakeholders. It will consolidate entry points into CAMH under one service and leadership team, aligning the Emergency Department with crisis clinics. This will reduce delays in accessing specialized services for patients, such as youth in need of treatment for co-occurring mental illness and addiction. It will allow us to address patient flow and to build on our partnerships to benefit all patients.
A Complex Mental Illness
program brings the services that specialize in serious and persistent mental illness, including Schizophrenia and Forensics, as well as high acuity units in other areas under common leadership. It allows us to develop and implement care standards and focus on establishing best practice pathways for patients who need crisis care or rehabilitation at different stages of their illness. Ambulatory Care and Structured Treatments
brings together care for patients whose contact with CAMH is usually on a scheduled basis (for example, our current Addictions, Mood and Anxiety or Women’s programs). It will coordinate and enhance structured treatments such as our 21-day programs and Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT).
A program dedicated to Underserved Populations
allows us to serve smaller, special populations, developing partnerships and initiatives for children and youth, geriatric clients and those with dual diagnosis while working to identify resources to expand access to care for these patients.
Our program leaders are beginning to reach out to key stakeholders in the community and across the healthcare system, with a goal of building on existing partnerships and developing new ones to continue improving service to clients and families.
See the Frequently Asked Questions
page of this section for some more detail, and watch www.camh.ca in the coming months as we communicate in more detail about this exciting transition. I look forward to hearing from you about your experience of the new CAMH!