October 10 is World Mental Health Day, a time to raise awareness about mental health and mobilize efforts to support those experiencing mental health issues. This year’s theme is “make mental health and well-being for all a global priority,” and we couldn’t agree more.
Mental health conditions are increasing worldwide. According to the World Health Organization, 450 million people currently struggle with mental illness, making it the leading cause of disability. Worse yet, 1 in 7 of the world’s adolescents have a mental disorder, and suicide has become the fourth leading cause of death for individuals aged 15-29.
Despite these alarming statistics, the gap between people needing care and those with access to care remains substantial. The Canadian Alliance on Mental Illness and Mental Health reports that 32% of Canadians aged 18-34 say they need mental health care but can’t access it. The last thing someone in distress needs is a barrier to treatment. Yet, this is what many face when trying to navigate the mental health and addictions maze.
Technology has the power to disrupt how mental health is delivered, which is currently too fragmented to facilitate easy access to care.
Ahead of World Mental Health day, we are pleased to shine a light on some of our global partners who are making progress in improving access and navigation to mental health services.
- Ontario Psychological Association (OPA)
Our partnership with the OPA has resulted in a digital clinical pathway to psychologists, opening up access for insurance providers, schools, first responders, hospitals, primary care practitioners and more, as well as a self-referral pilot program that assesses, matches, and connects clients directly to the most appropriate psychologist.
- NHS Western Isles
NHS Western Isles partnered with Strata Health to develop a proof-of-concept for a Single Point of Access (SPoA) that can be used in social prescribing for mental health and well-being.
- Alberta Health Services (AHS)
AHS worked with Strata Health to develop a province-wide referral pathway to addiction and mental health housing service providers, supporting central access placement into available vacancies.
- PRISM-ACCESS Open Minds
The PRISM-ACCESS Open Minds team worked with Strata Health to develop an online referral pathway that facilitates direct access to public mental health services for young people.
While it is incredible to see the critical work supporting mental health, we know that more must be done. It is crucial, now more than ever, that we work together to build better, more connected systems of care where all who need mental health resources can access them without barriers.
Ready to take the first step down a better path with Strata Health? Contact us today.
Read more from Strata Health:
- What’s Getting in the Way of Access to Mental Health Resources?
- The Time Is Now: Improving Access to Mental Health Services