Grey Bruce Health Services (GBHS) will be opening a new Wellness & Treatment Centre later this year (2023) dedicated to supporting individuals with mental health and addictions needs through voluntary treatment, transitional living and life skills development.
The new facility in Owen Sound will be located on 6th A Street East (former Bayview Public School) and will be the largest of its kind in the region providing care for individuals from throughout the Grey/Bruce region.
This project is the first of its kind in the region and is unique in Canada. Based on harm reduction and recovery principles, the centre will provide a safe environment for individuals in need of additional support following discharge from hospital/addiction services or who are being referred from a community agency. The patient journey will be based on the services that will be offered in the new wellness centre is depicted below.
The region has seen a significant increase in opioid-related hospitalizations and Emergency Department visits have tripled in the past few years. The current situation in the region has seen:
- GBHS Withdrawal Management Services at 100% occupancy with a waitlist
- Rapid Access Addiction Medicine visits have increased over 500% over the last 3 years
- 22% of Grey-Bruce residents identify as heavy drinkers
- 25% of all Emergency Department (ED) substance abuse visits return to the ED within 30 days for a substance abuse or mental health related issue
- On average there are 15 substance abuse ED visits per day across all of Grey Bruce
The new wellness centre will help the most vulnerable people get off the street and provide a safe space while they get medical treatment and therapy to get back on their feet. Most of these individuals have co-existing alcohol and drug issues and mental health challenges, compounded by unemployment and homelessness.
Hospitals are not the best setting for this type of care which is the reason for a new, purpose-built wellness and treatment facility.