(OTTAWA) Ontario Liberal MPPs Bob Chiarelli, John Fraser, Marie-France Lalonde, Madeleine Meilleur and Yasir Naqvi recognize the importance of supporting Ottawa as a leader in mental health research as well as providing the right front line mental health and addiction services in our communities. Mental illness and addictions are significant and complex issues that cut across our community and touch the lives of many people in Ottawa. Our government understands that investments are necessary to provide meaningful supports.
As part of the 2015 Ontario Budget, Building Ontario Up, Ottawa’s local MPPs have secured funding for a $2 million grant to the the Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre’s renowned Institute for Mental Health Research towards the purchase of a Positron Emission Tomography - Magnetic Resonance Imaging (PET-MRI) Brain Imaging System. This state of the art instrument will advance our understanding and will develop early intervention of various mental health disorders, with depression being the main focus of research.
The PET-MRI brain-imaging system will enable medical researchers to further understand the location of the malfunctioning circuits in the brain as well as the underlying neurochemical processes. This will be the first such instrument dedicated to mental health research in North America, and will put Ottawa and Ontario at the forefront globally.
In addition to $2 million recently announced for enhanced front-line services through the Champlain LHIN, Ottawa’s local MPPs also delivered an investment of $657,225 over two years in a new project at Algonquin College. This investment will improve student access to high-quality mental health services that will feature specialized targeted support for First Nations, Métis and Inuit students. Algonquin College, in partnership with local organizations, is working together to develop and implement an awareness, education and harm-reduction strategy focused on drug use and abuse. It will help ensure that students at Algonquin College in Ottawa can obtain the right care, at the right time, in the right place.
Today’s investments in Ottawa are part of Ontario’s Comprehensive Mental Health and Addictions Strategy and part of our economic plan to invest in the people of Ontario.
"This $2 million dollar investment will help to establish the new Brain Imaging Centre at The Royal. At the core of this important research hub will be a state-of-the-art brain imaging machine - a game-changing clinical research tool for investigating brain circuitry linked to depression, suicide, post-traumatic stress disorder, and other mental illnesses."
- George Weber, President and CEO of the Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre
“Through this harm reduction initiative, Algonquin College’s goal is to further raise awareness, and provide outreach to current and incoming students with addiction and related mental health challenges. We thank the Ontario government for their support of our students’ well-being.”
- Cheryl Jensen, President of Alqonquin College
“The Government of Ontario is committed to innovations in mental health care. The top-flight research carried out by The Royal’s Institute of Mental Health Research (IMHR) and this new support for Algonquin College will go far in bringing light and hope to people living with mental health issues.”
- Bob Chiarelli, MPP, Ottawa-West Nepean
“Mental health is an important part of our overall health. As a community, it is essential that we work together to support good mental health and reduce the stigma that has been associated with mental health conditions for far too long.”
-John Fraser, MPP, Ottawa South
“Coming from a background in social work, I am aware of the importance of investing in mental health funding and I am proud of this government’s long-term commitment to providing better support and services in Ottawa and across the province.”
-Marie-France Lalonde, MPP, Ottawa-Orléans
“Our government is committed to improving mental health care in Ottawa by investing $ 2 million in the Brain Imaging Centre at the Royal Ottawa Hospital. Our funding will help purchase a brain imaging device that will better understand mental health issues.”
-Madeleine Meilleur, MPP, Ottawa-Vanier
“Mental illness remains a very real challenge for all of our families, friends and communities. This crucial investment by the province will support leading edge mental health research in Ottawa and improved front line services.”
-Yasir Naqvi, MPP, Ottawa Centre
Office of MPP John Fraser