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Sunday December 11th, 2011

Posted at 11:00am

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While this time of year is a joyous time for many of us, it can also be a very difficult time for those suffering from severe depression and other mental illnesses.

Hôtel-Dieu Grace Hospital has launched its “Feeling Overwhelmed” mental health awareness campaign, in hopes of reaching out to some of our region’s most vulnerable citizens.

The campaign focuses on the Community Crisis Centre, which includes a telephone line — 519-973-4435 — that is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. It operates out of the hospital and provides immediate intervention for callers who feel overwhelmed by circumstances in their lives.

“Circumstances in our lives can overpower any of us,” said Dr. Sonja Grbevski, Director of the Mental Health Program. “If you call the Community Crisis Line, you will speak with a caring, dedicated health care professional who will provide you with crisis intervention.”

Other crisis intervention services at HDGH include:

  • Walk-in visits to the Community Crisis Centre main office in the first floor of the Jeanne Mance Building, during business hours from Monday to Friday.
  • A Mobile Crisis Team which responds to the client’s location throughout Windsor-Essex County upon request, when it is safe to do so.
  • Emergency Mental Health/Crisis services available on a 24-hour basis through our Emergency Department.

On the hospital’s main website, visitors can click on the “Feeling Overwhelmed?” button to learn more about the acute mental health services provided at the hospital.  The site also provides brief descriptions of more commonly known mental health disorders including depression, stress, anxiety, bipolar disorder and schizophrenia, as well as links to outside organizations whose sites carry the latest research and facts about causes, symptoms and treatments.

“As an inner city hospital, we have a great responsibility to ensure we are reaching out to those in need,” said Ken Deane, Supervisor for HDGH. “We need to speak openly about these often difficult topics and work with our community partners to strengthen services for mental health and educate the public to raise awareness of these important issues.”

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