B.C. funds expansion of network providing mental illness support to families

By The Canadian Press
May 24, 2016 - 12:24pm

VANCOUVER — British Columbia is providing $3 million in funding for specialized support to people living with serious mental illness and their families.

Health Minister Terry Lake says the money will help the B.C. Schizophrenia Society, which also serves people affected by bipolar disorder, depression and other severe and persistent mental illnesses.

Lake says the money will help to expand the society’s provincewide caregiver network so families dealing with a mentally ill loved one can get the emotional support they need.

Lake unveiled the funding on national Schizophrenia Awareness Day and says it will provide cost-effective support by reducing the likelihood that patients need acute interventions.

The society’s executive director Deborah Conner says the funding will reduce hospitalizations, homelessness and save lives.

B.C. is developing an integrated mental health strategy to address gaps in the current system as identified by the province’s auditor general.

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