People deal with mental health issues every day, but not until recently have their been so many coming forward and asking for help. Whether it’s a result of social media campaigns like #BellLetsTalk day or just a general willingness to get past the stigma that surrounds admitting you have an issue, the rise in people coming forward means more work needs to be done to help those people.
Some of the necessities to treat these people are psychiatrists, beds and workers to staff those beds like nurse practitioners. During question period in the Ontario Legislature on February 27, MPP of London West Peggy Sattler said mental health beds are having to be used at up to 165 per cent occupancy, well above the safe occupancy rate of 85 per cent.
As a result of MPP Sattler’s question on how the government will staff the new beds being added to the London Health Sciences Centre, newly appointed Minister of Health Helena Jaczek announced 5 more psychiatrists and 1 nurse practitioner will be hired to staff the new beds.
There’s no certainty the new beds will be enough to deal with the number of people seeking help, and no assurances that the extra staff is enough to take the strain off the currant doctors and staff that have been taxed due to the rise in people seeking help.