Health Minister Michael de Jong, with Chilliwack MLA John Les and Chilliwack-Hope MLA Barry Penner, were joined by representatives of Fraser Health for the opening of a new $2.7-million 20-bed mental health program.
Cedar Ridge will provide care for adults with serious, complex and persistent mental health illnesses who need intensive and highly specialized mental health care.
The Province has invested $1.9-million into the Cedar Ridge program, and the Fraser Valley Regional Hospital District contributed $800,000 toward the capital costs of this project.
The program will provide rehabilitation and care that is focused on recovery. This includes basic life-skill programming and support such as meal preparation, housekeeping, budgeting and leisure planning. The length of stay will range from six months to 24 months or longer depending on individual needs.
Cedar Ridge is a key component of the Province's commitment to the Riverview Redevelopment Project, which is bringing mental health care into communities and closer to families. Initially, the program will accommodate patients transferred from Riverview Hospital. As beds become available, Cedar Ridge will be open to clients from across Fraser Health who are in need of this level of specialized support and treatment.
As the Riverview Redevelopment Project progresses, responsibility for caring for individuals with serious and persistent mental illness is being transferred to B.C.'s five regional health authorities. To date, Fraser Health has opened 214 beds in communities across Fraser Health.
Fraser Health provides a wide range of integrated health services to the largest and fastest growing population in B.C. The health authority is committed to improving the health of the population and the quality of life of more than 1.6-million people living in communities from Burnaby to White Rock to Hope.
In 2010-11, just over $1.3 billion was spent to support services and programs for people with mental health and/or substance use problems. The Province's 10 Year Plan to Address Mental Health and Substance Use in B.C. - Healthy Minds, Healthy People - is a road map to further improving mental health for all British Columbians. The Province has committed $138 million in capital funding to develop 916 tertiary mental health beds by the regional health authorities to replace Riverview Hospital beds.
Michael de Jong, Minister of Health -
"The Province is committed to improving support and services for people facing mental health issues. Programs like Cedar Ridge, with a home-like, non-institutional ambiance, will offer a high quality of life for those requiring specialized mental health care."
John Les, MLA for
"Cedar Ridge is an important asset for the community of Chilliwack. Mental illness can affect anyone and families in this community will now benefit from having these services close to home."
Barry Penner, MLA for Chilliwack-Hope -
"Mental illness is more common than many people realize. Having this program available in Chilliwack is a great step forward, and will help people recover from a mental illness and integrate back into the community."
Nigel Murray, president and chief executive officer, Fraser Health -
"Research shows that individuals living with serious and persistent mental illness respond better to care in smaller, community settings rather than in large institutions."
"Cedar Ridge is yet another step forward in building Fraser Health's newest and most intensive and highly-specialized - tertiary - level of mental health care and in strengthening our network of mental health services including health promotion and prevention, community services, supported housing, primary and secondary in-patient care and tertiary services."
Wynne Powell, chair, board of directors, Provincial Health Services Authority -
"The opening of this beautifully renovated facility to care for those needing specialized mental health care is another milestone for the Riverview Redevelopment Project as we work with the health authorities across British Columbia to build capacity and have these services become an integral part of the continuum of care in each health region."
Sharon Gaetz, mayor of Chilliwack and chair of Fraser Valley Regional Hospital District -
"The Fraser Valley Regional Hospital District is proud to support programs that provide services and care to patients with mental illness. We remain committed to ensuring Fraser Valley residents have access to a broad range of health services in their own communities."
* Oct. 2-8 2011 is National Mental Illness Awareness Week (MIAW).
* Mental illness affects more than six million Canadians.
* Of the 10 leading causes of disability worldwide, five are mental disorders.
* Close to 4,000 Canadians commit suicide each year. Mental illness is a factor in most suicides and is the most common cause of death for people aged 15-24.
* For tips on how to be healthy at any age, visit: www.healthyfamiliesbc.ca
* For more information on the BC Mental Health and Addiction Services, visit: www.bcmhas.ca
* To learn more about Mental Illness Awareness Week, visit: www.miaw.ca
Media Relations Manager
Ministry of Health
250 952-1887 (media line)
Fraser Health Communications
604 450-7881 (media pager)
Connect with the Province of B.C. at: www.gov.bc.ca/connect