Manitoba Government Invests More Than $4.7 Million in New Addictions Treatment Spaces, Enhanced Community Programming in Rural, Northern Manitoba
June 8, 2023
BRANDON—The Manitoba government is investing more than $4.7 million to increase the capacity of high-quality, evidence-based addictions treatment services in rural and northern communities in order to ensure more Manitobans are able to access timely and effective treatment closer to home, Mental Health and Community Wellness Minister Janice Morley-Lecomte announced here today.
“We recognize that the need for substance-use and addictions services is greater than ever, and we made a commitment in the 2022 speech from the throne to provide and support 1,000 treatment spaces throughout the province,” said Morley-Lecomte. “Given that access to addictions treatment and services can be especially challenging in rural and northern communities, I am pleased to announce this unprecedented investment to increase the capacity of life-saving supports in underserved areas.”
The Manitoba government is granting $3.3 million to service providers selected through a public call for proposals to support 835 new treatment spaces. This investment will enhance access to vital addictions services across the full continuum of care, including withdrawal management, bed-based treatment, supportive recovery housing and day programming, the minister noted.
Through this funding, the Manitoba government will support withdrawal management spaces in the Northern, Prairie Mountain and Interlake-Eastern health regions, as well as bed-based services in the Prairie Mountain and Northern health regions. In addition, new day programming spaces will be implemented in Brandon, within the Prairie Mountain Health region.
“This investment for new medical withdrawal management beds and opiate agonist treatment at the Flin Flon General Hospital will provide northern residents with this much-needed service,” said Raj Sewda, CEO, Northern Health Region. “Providing care closer to home will improve our ability to support and meet the needs of our patients.”
An additional $600,000 in ongoing provincial funding will sustain six community non-medical withdrawal management beds in Brandon previously supported by federal funding, the minister said. The spaces provide critical support for individuals experiencing mild to moderate withdrawal symptoms so they can safely transition to the next appropriate treatment program.
“The Manitoba government’s investment here is huge. In the past, we have had to turn away young moms from our recovery program as we have not had the appropriate living spaces,” said Dwayne Dyck, executive director, Westman Youth for Christ. “With the new money, we will be able to host up to four young moms and their children in addition to the young people we are currently serving. That is a big deal for a young mom who now does not have to choose between raising her child and stabilizing her sobriety.”
The Manitoba government is also investing nearly $800,000 to support a new Flexible Assertive Community Treatment (FACT) team in Brandon. The team offers comprehensive, community-based psychiatric treatment, rehabilitation and support to individuals with serious, enduring mental health and concurrent disorders, the minister noted, adding the team will support up to 360 individuals every year across the Prairie Mountain Health region.
“The additional resources provided to shift our services toward a Flexible Assertive Community Treatment model will provide wrap-around support and services for individuals living with enduring mental illness and co-occurring substance use that is matched with their current level of need, and with seamless transitions when their needs change,” said Chris Bromley, director of mental health services, Prairie Mountain Health. “The new withdrawal management spaces represent three levels of withdrawal management, community, medical and mobile, available in the Prairie Mountain Health region to match an individual’s stage of recovery and their current needs. This work also aims to strengthen existing and new pathways of care to other services available in the region.”
The minister noted the investments align with the priorities identified in A Pathway to Mental Health and Community Wellness: A Roadmap for Manitoba, the Manitoba government’s five-year strategy for improving wellness, mental health, substance use and addictions services and programs throughout the province.
“Increasing access to mental health and addictions supports and services is a priority as we move forward,” said Morley-Lecomte. “We recognize the importance of ensuring this help is available to Manitobans where and when they need it.”
To read A Pathway to Mental Health and Community Wellness: A Roadmap for Manitoba, visit https://gov.mb.ca/mh/roadmap.html.
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BACKGROUND INFORMATION ATTACHED
New Addictions Treatment Spaces, Enhanced Community Programming in Rural, Northern Manitoba
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