Mental health centre for 8,000 children and youth to open in Calgary

A mental health centre for Calgary youth will open on Monday in the city’s northwest, according to a news release from Alberta Health Services (AHS) Friday.

AHS said The Summit: Marian & Jim Sinneave Centre for Youth Resilience will offer mental health services to people up to and including 18 years of age, with the goal of reducing mental illness in youth through early intervention.

“The new centre will support about 8,000 patients and families every year,” AHS said.

Read more: More than half of Canadian youth find mental health services ‘not easy to access’: report

The Summit will offer free, walk-in therapy sessions for children, youth and families, from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. seven days a week.

The Ptarmigan Day Hospital will open in the centre, marking the city’s first mental-health day hospital for children, helping kids transition out of inpatient care into daily intensive therapy, AHS said.

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It will also house the Tallman Family Treatment Services, to help young people manage escalating symptoms of mental illness to avoid or reduce the need for hospitalization.

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The Summit will operate in partnership with the University of Calgary, where researchers will develop, test and refine new clinical interventions, AHS said.

“The Summit will incorporate accessible mental health care with leading-edge research, so we can mobilize academic insights into the best possible clinical care for children and youth,” Ed McCauley, president of the university.

Read more: Alberta government promises $92M for youth mental health

The Alberta government said it has $10 million earmarked for the centre in the 2023 budget.

It also has $1.5 million tagged for training doctors through the Canadian Research and Education for the Advancement of Child Health (CanREACH), a program that helps physicians develop the skills needed to treat children with mental health and behavioural issues.

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