Fundamental Flaws in “Not Criminally Responsible Reform Act” Will Set Back Mental Health without Increasing Public Safety says CoaltionOttawa, Ontario—May 7, 2013
Mental health groups called for collaboration with government and victims groups to amend Bill C-54 at a press conference today, calling the bill “too important to rush”.
Read the joint media release.
The Consequences of Bill C-54, the Not Criminally Responsible Reform Act Ottawa, Ontario—April 18, 2013
Read the CPA information release.
CPA Testifies on the Military and PTSD at Standing Committee on National Defence Ottawa, Ontario—April 17, 2013
Read the presentation.
Praise for Housing First Strategy But Comprehensive National Affordable Housing Strategy Needed Ottawa, Ontario—April 16, 2013
Read the letter to Minister Finley.
Mental Health Addressed in 2013 Federal Budget Ottawa, Ontario—March 22, 2013
Read the CPA communiqué.
CPA Congratulates Authors on Creation of Voluntary National Standard for Psychological Health and Safety in the WorkplaceOttawa, Ontario—February 6, 2013
Read the CPA letter. Read the standards document.
CAMIMH Supports Bill C-400 to Implement a National Housing StrategyOttawa, Ontario—February 4, 2013
Read the letter to Minister Finley.
A Federal Anti-bullying Strategy: Ottawa, Ontario—November 20, 2012
A Step Towards Putting the Mental Health Strategy for Canada into Action
The Canadian Psychiatric Association supports MP Dany Morin’s motion to establish a special House of Commons Committee to develop a national anti-bullying prevention strategy.
Read the media release.
Action needed on self-injury, segregation among inmates Ottawa, Ontario—October 29, 2012
with mental illness in prisons says editorial
There remain serious gaps in care when it comes to self-injurious behaviour and segregation write Dr. Stanley Yaren and Dr. Barinder Singh. Their editorial, published in The Hill Times, draws attention to the Correctional Investigator's 2011-2012 annual report.
Read the editorial.
Correctional Investigator Releases 2012 Report Ottawa, Ontario—October 23, 2012
Psychiatrists and psychologists say urgent action is needed to meet the mental health needs of inmates in Canadian prisons.
Read the Correctional Investigator's report.
Read the joint Canadian Psychiatric Association and Canadian Psychological Association media release.
On World Mental Health Day, CPA President Issues Joint Statement With her Counterparts AbroadOttawa, Ontario—October 10, 2012
On World Mental Health Day, October 10, Dr. Suzane Renaud, President of the Canadian Psychiatric Association, joined with her counterparts abroad to call on governments to ensure mental health is given the prominence it deserves.
Read the statement.
CPA President joins CAMIMH partners on Parliament Hill for a special MIAW lobby dayOttawa, Ontario—October 2, 2012
On October 2, CPA's newly inaugurated president, Dr. Suzane Renaud, joined members from the Canadian Alliance on Mental Illness and Mental Health as well as Mental Illness Awareness Week’s (MIAW) Faces of Mental Illness on Parliament Hill to discuss mental health initiatives with Parliamentarians.
Read the MIAW media release. Read about the Faces.
Canadian Psychiatrists Welcome Dr. Suzane Renaud as New Association PresidentMontreal, Quebec—September 29, 2012
Read more about Dr. Renaud.
Psychiatrists Recognize Outstanding Contributions to Mental Health at the CPA ConferenceMontreal, Quebec—September 29, 2012
Read CPA communiqué. Backgrounder on awardees.
CPA and the Canadian Forces Meet on Enhancing Mental HealthcareMontreal, Quebec—September 27, 2012
Mental health experts from the Canadian Forces (CF) and representatives from the CPA met to to discuss, among other issues, recruiting and retention and how the CF’s best practices are adaptable to civilian mental healthcare programs.
Read the Department of National Defence Media Release.
Canadian Psychiatrists Heartened by MacKay’s Statement Today Ottawa, Ontario—September 12, 2012
That Mental Health of Soldiers is His Top Priority:
Money and Personnel Announced
The Minister of Defence’s statement today that the mental health needs of military personnel are his number one priority, accompanied by an announcement of more money and personnel to strengthen mental health care delivery to Canadian soldiers, is heartening says the Canadian Psychiatric Association.
Read CPA communiqué. Read Minister's Announcement.
Canadians Rally in Support of Suicide PreventionOttawa, Ontario—September 8, 2012
September 10th is World Suicide Prevention Day. Suicide is the leading cause of injury related fatality in Canada. In 2009 alone, there were about 100,000 years of potential life lost to Canadians under the age of 75 as a result of suicides, and it is estimated that well over 3,000,000 Canadians have been touched by suicide in some way. Among those aged 15 to 34, suicide was the second leading cause of death.
Read joint media release.
Cuts to Refugee Health Care A Grave Mental Health Concern: Ottawa, Ontario—June 6, 2012
Psychiatrists Urge Policy Reversal
Under a new federal policy which comes into effect on June 30, 2012, coverage for medications will be cut for refugees except in cases of danger to public health or safety. Physician visits and hospital care will similarly be completely cut depending on the refugee’s country of origin. The Canadian Psychiatric Association is urging the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration to reverse these cuts.
According to information released by Citizenship and Immigration Canada, coverage for psychiatric care and medications for psychosis would be provided only if the refugee would otherwise pose harm to others—a policy further stigmatizes people with mental illness. It is also unclear what coverage will be provided to refugees who are suicidal. “Refugees are among the most vulnerable members of our community. Having fled danger and persecution, they have often experienced trauma and already face many barriers to good health as they seek refuge in Canada,” says CPA President, Dr. Fiona McGregor.
Read the letter to the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration.
Release of Mental Health Strategy for Canada An Historic Milestone Say Canadian PsychiatristsOttawa, Ontario--May 8, 2012
The Canadian Psychiatric Association (CPA) congratulates the Mental Health Commission of Canada on developing and releasing Canada’s first-ever mental health strategy. “The release of the mental health strategy is an historic milestone and something the CPA has advocated for 15 years,” said CPA President Dr. Fiona McGregor. Read the release.
Canadian Psychiatrists Concerned About Trend in Federal Cutbacks to Mental HealthOttawa, Ontario--May 4, 2012
The Canadian Psychiatric Association (CPA) is very concerned that recent cuts to mental health in areas of federal responsibility signal a general trend. Read the release.
Antidepressants are an important part of treatment for depressionOttawa, Ontario--April 30, 2012
The conclusion of a recently published review, that antidepressants are more harmful than helpful is unwarranted. Read the letter to the editor submitted to the publishing journal.
CPA releases position paper on training in cultural psychiatryOttawa, Ontario--March 29, 2012
Read the paper online.
Dr. David Goldbloom Named New ChairOttawa, Ontario--March 23, 2012
of the Mental Health Commission of Canada
Psychiatrist Dr. David Goldbloom will become the new Chair of the Mental Health Commission of Canada (MHCC), effective this April 1.
Read the MHCC media release. Read Dr. Goldbloom's bio.
CPA Supports Bill for a National Suicide Prevention FrameworkOttawa, Ontario--March 7, 2012
The Canadian Psychiatric Association submitted a brief to the House of Commons Standing Committee on Health in support of Harold Albrecht's private member's bill, Bill C-300 An Act respecting a Federal Framework for Suicide Prevention. Read the HESA submission.
Action Needed to Address the Increasing Criminalization of People with Mental Illness Say Canadian PsychiatristsOttawa, Ontario--March 5, 2012
The Canadian Psychiatric Association (CPA) has released a position paper,
The Criminalization of People with Mental Illness, pressing the provincial and federal governments to work together to reduce the rising number of people with mental illness who are being unduly criminalized. Read the media release.
Premiers Applauded for Focus on Mental HealthOttawa, Ontario--February 20, 2012
In February Premier Selinger hosted an all premier meeting in Winnipeg to examine mental health issues in Canada. The Canadian Psychiatric Association, the Canadian Psychological Association and the Canadian Mental Health Association jointly congratulate the provincial premiers for their focus on mental health promotion and mental illness prevention. Read the joint letter.
CPA Signs On to Joint Media Release in Support of Bill C-300, Ottawa, Ontario--February 3, 2012
An Act respecting a Federal Framework for Suicide Prevention
Read the media release.
CPA Supports Bill for a National Suicide Prevention FrameworkOttawa, Ontario--January 26, 2012
The Canadian Psychiatric Association has written a letter in support of Harold Albrecht's private member's bill, Bill C-300, An Act respecting a Federal Framework for Suicide Prevention.
Psychiatrists urge government to address worsening mental health problems among inmatesFederal crime agenda must include better access to vital services says CPA
Ottawa, Ontario—December 7, 2011
The Canadian Psychiatric Association (CPA) released a position statement today that calls on the federal government to address a growing crisis in Canada’s correctional facilities: the lack of access to mental health services for the thousands of Canadians with mental illness who languish in our country’s jails. Individuals with mental illness are over-represented in our prisons and the government’s approach to criminal justice policy means the problem will only get worse unless urgent action is taken now.
Read the complete media release.
Read the statement online.
Mental illness, poor mental health Ottawa, Ontario--November 7, 2011
have profound impact on Canadian society
Mental health needs to be included in the soon to be renewed 2004 federal-provincial health accord says CPA President, Dr. Fiona McGregor.
Read the President's letter to the editor published in The Hill Times.
Psychiatrists Echo Correctional Investigator’s Renewed Call Ottawa, Ontario--November 1, 2011
for Better Mental Health Services in Federal Prisons
The Canadian Psychiatric Association is discouraged that lack of access to mental health services in federal prisons continues to be an area of ongoing concern for the Office of the Correctional Investigator and a major focus of the annual report tabled in Parliament today.
Read the CPA media release.
Read the Office of the Correctional Investigator Report.
Psychotherapy Training of Psychiatrists the Responsibility Ottawa, Ontario--August 2011
of the Profession
Psychotherapy is an integral component of psychiatric care. As physicians with training in both medical and psychological aspects of behaviour, psychiatrists integrate psychological and biological approaches within a treatment plan. Given the medical underpinning of this unique skill set, a new CPA position statement published in this month’s The CJP affirms that it is essential that psychiatrists retain the leadership role in the planning, teaching and certification of psychotherapy training of psychiatrists and residents. Read the full statement online.
CPA Publishes Statement on Seclusion and Restraint in PsychiatryOttawa, Ontario--August 2011
Ideally, no person should lose their right to liberty and freedom, but, unfortunately, acute mental illness may make that impossible, albeit for brief periods. The use of seclusion and restraint should be emergency measures used only when all others fail or are unsuitable. These interventions may be essential to protect not only the patient, but also others, including fellow patients, members of the public and staff. If and when used, current monitored safeguards must be in place.
Read the full statement in the August The CJP or online.
CPA releases paper on Access to Newer MedicationsOttawa, Ontario, July 2011
Canadians who are dependent on public drug programs do not have equal access to emerging new medications for mental disorders, compared with those who have private drug insurance coverage and drug plan coverage from province to province is unequal. In response to these concerns, the CPA has released a position paper on access to newer medications stating that all Canadians with mental disorders must have access to all effective treatments, including medications, which have been recognized as clinically effective by Health Canada. Read the paper online.
CPA Asks New Parliament to Make Mental Health a PriorityOttawa, Ontario--June 1, 2011
CPA reminded Parliamentarians that more is needed to help the one in five Canadians who will suffer from a mental illness in their lifetime. Specifically CPA requested that the government address the needs of Canadians by:
- putting mental health at the forefront of the agenda during the upcoming Health Accord negotiations,
- ensuring equitable funding for mental health research, and
- implementing a pan-Canadian mental health strategy.
Read the letter to the Prime Minister.
Read the letter to the Minister of Health.
Read letter to the Leader of the Official Opposition.
Federal Election Party's Response to QuestionnairesBefore Canadians went to the polls on Monday, May 2nd, the Canadian Psychiatric Association wanted to find out exactly where each party stood on the issue of mental health and mental illness. We developed a short questionnaire, on behalf of the Canadian Alliance on Mental Illness and Mental Health (CAMIMH), and sent it to the five major federal political parties (LPC, CPC, NDP, Green and Bloc). The questionnaire asked them about their party’s position on such issues as support for parity of resources for treatment of mental and physical problems, increased funding for mental health research, and improved access to mental health services.
Here are the answers that we received from:
The Conservative Party
The Green Party
The Liberal Party
The Bloc Québecois
During the Election Make Your Voice Heard on Mental Health!April 18, 2011
Saturday March 26, 2011 marked the beginning of an election campaign period that will send Canadians to the polls on Monday May 2, 2011. Regardless of which party or candidate you will be voting for, this election presents a great opportunity for your voice to be heard. In fact, politicians respond more directly to the concerns of voters and organizations in their local riding. This is especially true during an election campaign as they are eager to please their constituents and win their votes.
You can make your voice heard by:
1. Visit this website and send the candidates in your riding a letter asking them about mental health issues.
2. When candidates come knocking on your door, or when they call you on the phone, ask them the following questions;
- Does your party platform contain anything related to mental health?
- Do you support parity between resources made available for treatment of mental and physical health problems?
- Less than half of persons with mental health problems receive needed services. What will your party do to enhance access to mental health services and address the shortage of mental health professionals in Canada? And in this riding?
- Will your party commit to increasing funding for mental health and mental illness research?
- What will your party do to support individuals, families, the workplace and communities when it comes to mental health and mental illness?
3. When the national and local news media asks for comments or questions about the election write in and ask about mental health.
4. Attend your local debate and ask the candidates questions about mental health.
5. Become active in campaigns.
It is very important that you take an active role during this campaigning period because those that are elected will shape the future of health care in Canada. The candidates who are chosen to represent you in this election will be the ones responsible for overseeing the Health Accord negotiations that is up for renewal in 2014. The 2004 Accord set out an extra $41.2-billion over 10 years in dedicated funding for health care issues such as reducing wait times, training health professionals, expanding home care and developing a national pharmaceutical strategy. It will be vital to increase awareness of mental health and mental illness issues so that they are fully addressed in upcoming negotiations. We must seize this opportunity to be involved.
Together we can play a key role in advancing the issue of mental health and mental illness by interacting with candidates directly.
Canada’s Doctors Call for Action on Generic Drug ShortagesMarch 14, 2011
Canada’s doctors, including the Canadian Psychiatric Association, made a united call for a federal investigation and report on recent generic drug shortages to ensure that any policy and regulatory decisions are founded on accurate and reliable knowledge. They also strongly urge the development of a comprehensive plan for monitoring and responding to domestic shortages of medically necessary drugs. A January 2011 survey of found that more than one in five physicians reported shortages of anitidepressant drugs such as imipramine, amitriptyline and fluoxetine. Read the letter.
Mental Health Policy: The Orphan of Health Care Says CPAFebruary 21, 2011, The Hill Times
CPA speaks out for integrating mental health care in general health care policy discussions, starting with expanding the soon to be renewed 2004 federal-provincial health accord to include mental health. Read the letter published in The Hill Times.
CPA Supports Legislation Calling for a National Strategy for Suicide Prevention Ottawa, Ontario--February 14, 2011
The CPA wrote in support of MP Meagan Leslie's Bill C-593, An Act respecting a National Strategy for Suicide Prevention Read the letter
CPA Speaks Out on Prison Mental HealthOttawa, Ontario--January 26, 2011
CPA spoke out in support of warnings by Canada's Correctional Investigator about the scarcity of treatment for mentally ill inmates. The federal government's plan to get tough on crime by locking up more Canadians will only aggravate the problem. What is needed, the CPA stressed, are services for inmates and policies that favour early detection and treatment. Read the letter.
OPEN LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Ottawa, Ontario--October 12, 2010
Privacy Breaches Within Veterans Affairs Egregious
It is with shock and dismay that the Canadian Psychiatric Association (CPA) has listened to the unfolding story of how the Veterans Affairs medical records of Sean Bruyea were indiscriminately shared. CPA responds with an open letter to all media. Read the letter.
Psychiatrists Renew Call Upon the Government to Act on Poverty ReportOttawa, Ontario--September 30, 2010
Yesterday, the Government of Canada listed its accomplishments in reducing poverty in Canada yet did not directly comment on a single recommendation contained in the report, In from the Margins: A Call to Action on Poverty, Housing and Homelessness. Earlier this year, the Senate of Canada unanimously endorsed this landmark report which contained 74 recommendations to help lift Canadians out of poverty. CPA Communiqué.
CPA sends strong message to federal governmentOttawa, Ontario--May 14, 2010
The CPA is advocating for a group of Canadians at great risk of mental illnesses by reaching out to the federal government with letters of support for two major initiatives dealing with homelessness.
A first letter was sent to Prime Minister Stephen Harper in support of the Senate report “In from the Margins: A Call for Action on Poverty, Housing and Homelessness.” That report concluded, in part, that, “We need once and for all to break the cycle of poverty in Canada… we owe it to the millions of Canadians that struggle day in day out with poverty. But we also owe it to Canada as a whole.” Read the CPA's letter in full.
A second letter of support was sent to Conservative and Bloc Quebecois members of parliament, urging them to join MPs from the Liberal and New Democratic parties in support of Bill C-304, “An Act to ensure secure, adequate, accessible and affordable housing for Canadians”. This Bill, if passed into law, would “require the Minister responsible for the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation to consult with the provincial and territorial ministers of the Crown responsible for municipal affairs and housing and with representatives of municipalities, Aboriginal communities, non-profit and private sector housing providers and civil society organizations in order to establish a national housing strategy.” Read the CPA's letter in full.
Psychiatrists Join Wait Time Alliance to Advocate for Benchmarks for Psychiatric CareOttawa, ON (April 19, 2007)
Today the Canadian Psychiatric Association joined the expanded Wait Time Alliance to step up its advocacy for wait time benchmarks in psychiatry.
CPA Media Release
Wait List Policy Paper
Feds Announce Money for National Mental Health Commission!Ottawa, ON (March 19, 2007)
Today’s federal budget established a National Mental Health Commission along the lines advocated by the CPA and recommended by the Senate Committee. The Commission receives $10M over the next two years and $15M for the next eight years. The budget speech also confirmed that Senator Michael Kirby has agreed to chair the Commission. This is welcome news to the mental health community and brings us a step closer to our ultimate goal : a national mental health strategy for Canada!
CPA Brief on the importance of the Commission
More on the federal budget and mental health
Canadian Psychiatrists Issue Statement on Quebec’s Bill 37Ottawa, ON (November 27, 2006)
The President of the Canadian Psychiatric Association has written to the Minister of Health and Social Services in Quebec expressing the grave concerns held by psychiatrists across Canada about Bill 37 of the 37th legislature of Quebec, An Act Respecting the Provision of Health Services by Medical Specialists. Psychiatrists in Canada find the legislation a deplorable infringement of personal and clinical autonomy of their Quebec colleagues.
Letter to Ministre Couillard
Write Your MP to Urge Action Ottawa, ON (September 1, 2006)
on the Senate Committee's Mental Health Report
In a recent letter to members Dr. Donald Milliken, CPA President (2005-2006), urged CPA members to write the federal government to take action on the all-party Senate committee's report, Out of the Shadows at Last. The report was released in May by the Senate Standing Committee on Social Affairs, Science and Technology.
The CPA and other national groups are keeping the pressure on Ottawa to establish a Canadian Mental Health Commission. "This was a key recommendation of the Senate Committee. It is a most important first step in getting action on the Senate's 118 recommendations for transforming the system of care for persons with mental illness," says Dr. Milliken.
The main concern is that if the federal government fails to take early action so that work begins, the report may languish in the shadows. "It is often forgotten that in his 1964 blueprint for medicare in Canada Justice Emmet Hall wrote, "Of all the problems presented before the Commission, that which reflects the greatest public concern, apart from financing of health services generally, is mental illness."
Although changes have occurred since then, the system remains inadequate. "We want to prevent the inaction on mental health that occurred following Justic Hall's report," says Dr. Milliken, "Both Senator Kirby and I believe that there is a critical mass of sympathy out there, amongst stakeholders, which can be translated into action."
"Contact your MP and seek his or her support for the report, and especially for the establishment of a Canadian Mental Health Commission before year's end," asks Dr. Milliken.
Senate Report Summary
Letter to Prime Minister
Sample Letter to MPs MS WORD
Tips for meeting with MPs
Senate Committee's Final ReportPsychiatry’s media release
CPA Preliminary Statement on Senate Mental Health Report
Joint Physician media release
Out of the Shadows at Last, final report of the Standing Senate Committee on Social Affairs, Science & Technology
Canadian Mental Health CommissionLiberal Government Announces Canadian Mental Health Commission
CPA Reaction to Announcement
Report 4: A Proposal to Establish a Canadian Mental Health Commission
CPA Submissions to Senate StudyJoint Brief to the Senate Standing Committee on Social Affairs, Science and Technology: Mental Health Study: October 2005
CPA Brief to the Senate Standing Committee on Social Affairs, Science and Technology: Mental Health Study: April 2005
Presentation to the Standing Committee on Social Affairs, Science and Technology: Mental Health Study: March 2004
CPA Releases Wait List Policy PaperOttawa, ON (March 23, 2006)
CPA's April 2006 policy paper, Wait Time Benchmarks for Patients with Serious Psychiatric Illnesses, sets guiding principles and definitions for wait times management in psychiatric care and provides clinical benchmarks for wait times for certain sentinel psychiatric illnesses.
The paper was developed in light of the final report from the Wait Time Alliance for Timely Access to Health Care in August 2005. It noted that mental health was a high priority area identified by members of the medical and patient stakeholder community, and that it required future attention. The CPA consulted within its community, circulating an earlier draft to a wide range of stakeholders during the fall of 2005.
Wait List Policy Paper
CPA Media Release