Mental health and drug abuse centre opens doors at VGH

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A new mental health and substance abuse centre opened its doors last week at Vancouver General Hospital to take pressure off the E.R. department.

Patients can access healthcare services and information, as well as onsite assessments.

“With the opening of this centre we’re effectively opening a second door into the health care system where issues stemming from mental health and substance use are a priority,” says Dr. Vijay Seethapathy, medical manager at Vancouver Coastal Health’s Access and Assessment Centre.

Some of the medical staff featured in Emergency Room: Life + Death at VGH (Knowledge Network)

SEE ALSO: VGH's most memorable ER patients revealed (VIDEO)

According to VCH, Vancouver General Hospital will see a reduction of 4,000 visits per year thanks to the opening of the new centre, which will offer 24/7 care. Any adult with mental health or substance abuse issues may access treatment.

The Access and Assessment Centre will provide services like phone and walk-in access, in-depth screening, and self and family referrals and will consolidate a number of mental health services under one roof.

On average, the centre sees about 30 referrals each day, but they expect more as the centre grows in size.

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Lauren Sundstrom Lauren is a Staff Writer and Projects Assistant at Vancity Buzz. She is a graduate of BCIT's Broadcast and Online Journalism program. She loves reporting on breaking news and lifestyle content. If you feel like you have a story that needs to be told, fire her a tweet.
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