A dedicated hospital unit for youth with mental-health and substance-use challenges will be built at the HOpe Centre at Lions Gate Hospital in North Vancouver, thanks in part to noted West Vancouver philanthropists and donors Jack and Leone Carlile.
The 10-bed unit for youth aged 13 to 18 years will focus on assessment and stabilization of patients with short stays of 14 to 20 days.
The unit will have a higher ratio of staff than an adult unit, and will be designed to be a welcoming and safe space, rather than a traditional hospital setting. The design reflects growing recognition of the need for youth-appropriate services for more effective treatment results. It will have private bedrooms, with natural sunlight, as well as spacious recreation and treatment areas, access to a gym, private spaces to reflect, read or play guitar, and areas where family members can spend time with their child or talk with staff. Patients will be able to continue with school work to normalize their schedules and support their recovery journey.
Following their stay, patients will be assessed to continue longer-term treatment on an outpatient basis while living at home.
Jack and Leone Carlile have donated $2 million of the $4.7 million in capital costs to build the youth unit on the third floor of the HOpe Centre, separate from the adult mental-health and addiction unit on the fourth floor. The Lions Gate Hospital Foundation is fundraising for the remaining capital costs, and the Province of British Columbia will provide the $3.1 million in annual operating costs for the unit through Vancouver Coastal Health. It is expected to be complete in spring 2017.
Opened in 2014, HOpe Centre is a state-of-the-art facility, purpose-built to provide seamless integrated mental-health and addiction services both in hospital and as outpatient services.
The new Jack and Leone Carlile Centre will add to existing provincial supports to address the needs of youth living with addictions and/or mental illness. These services range from helping children with anxiety through the school-based FRIENDS program, to vulnerable youth getting help with health care, shelter and social support through Vancouver’s Inner City Youth team, to specialized mental-health beds at BC Children’s Hospital.
The health sector invests approximately $1.4 billion every year in mental-health and substance-use services. Through government’s $25-million mental-health action plan, health authorities, police departments, health-care staff and other partners have helped hundreds of severely addicted and mentally ill patients secure housing and employment, have fewer interactions with police and spend less time in emergency rooms. Assertive Community Treatment (ACT) teams that now support over 1,300 clients throughout every health region in the province have played an important role in these successes.
Adding to these supports, almost 200 new substance-use treatment beds have been opened throughout the province in the past two years, part of government’s commitment to open 500 new beds by 2017. Government also recently announced the development of a new 105-bed mental-health facility that will become B.C.’s new Centre for Mental Health and Addiction on the Riverview grounds, the new 100-bed Joseph and Rosalie Segal Centre in Vancouver, which will open to patients in 2017, and plans for a 75-bed mental-health and substance-use facility at Royal Columbian Hospital.
To ensure that mental-health programs work effectively together, the Province is developing an integrated, cross-government mental-health and substance use strategy for British Columbia. This work includes a review of current child and youth mental-health programs and services. The goal is to address key gaps in the current system and ensure individuals and families can access support services early, before they find themselves in a crisis.
Health Minister Terry Lake –
“We recognize that youth with mental health and substance use concerns face a difficult and vulnerable future. The comprehensive services to be offered by the new Jack and Leone Carlile Centre will help many more youth address these roadblocks and get back on track to a healthy, promising life.”
Minister of Children and Family Development Stephanie Cadieux –
“Recovery can be a long road for teens and their families, and it can be difficult to overcome mental-health issues like depression in a sterile hospital setting designed for adults. The new centre will be youth-friendly and will have many of the comforts of home, so teens can continue to do a lot of the activities they enjoy while they’re getting treatment in a safe environment.”
Jack and Leone Carlile –
“As longtime residents of the North Shore, we see this gift as a great opportunity to make a meaningful difference in the community that means so much to us. It is our hope that in the near future, the youth served by this new facility will have the opportunity to reach their full potential and in turn, help others.”
Vancouver Coastal Health president and CEO Mary Ackenhusen –
“We thank Mr. and Mrs. Carlile for their generous gift. The new unit will allow us to provide improved care to youth so teenaged patients will be better served at a crucial time in their lives when some life-long mental-health and addiction challenges are first diagnosed and respond well to treatment.”
Paul Hamilton, chair, Lions Gate Hospital Foundation –
“We are incredibly fortunate to have donors such as the Carliles in our community. Their exceptional generosity and leadership in giving back is an inspiration to us all and will go a long way towards ensuring that the best quality mental-health care is available to our most vulnerable youth.”
Jordan Sturdy, MLA for West Vancouver-Sea to Sky –
“With one in five Canadian children and youth growing up carrying the burden of mental health issues, many facing the added complication of substance use issues, we know support is needed. With this new unit, we have a real chance to make a difference in young people’s lives.”
Ralph Sultan, MLA for West Vancouver-Capilano –
“I particularly applaud the attention given to young people who need extra support to continue living their lives as best they can. With this unit, in addition to treatment, they will have access to recreation, resources to continue their education or vocational counselling, and additional support from social workers, occupational therapists and physical therapists.”
Jane Thornthwaite, Parliamentary Secretary for Child Mental Health and MLA for North Vancouver-Seymour –
“Early intervention is critical – research shows 50% of all lifetime cases of mental-health disorders start by age 14, and 75% by 24. Left untreated, mental-health and substance-use challenges frequently impact educational achievement, employment opportunities and relationships. We can’t let this be the future for our youth.”
Naomi Yamamato, MLA for North Vancouver-Lonsdale –
“The Carlile families are pillars of their community and long-standing volunteers for programs like Meals on Wheels and serving on the board of The Salvation Army. I know the youth of Vancouver will appreciate the safe, welcoming environment of the Jack and Leone Carlile Centre.”
To learn about the services at the Kelty Mental Health Resource Centre:
For more information on the education-based FRIENDS for Life:
To visit the youth mental-health services map: