Provincial government to contribute up to $60 million for new brain and mental health centre in Toronto

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Ontario Construction News staff writer

Ontario is contributing up to $60 million toward the construction of a new centre dedicated to brain and mental health in Toronto.

The new Garry Hurvitz Brain Sciences Centre at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre “will lead to discoveries that could improve quality of life, save lives and help end hallway health care,” Health Minister Christine Elliott said as she announced the funding on Monday.

The facility will be the first of its kind in Canada and will help end hospital overcrowding and provide more integrated care.

Funding is part of the provincial government’s plan to invest $27 billion over 10 years to build new infrastructure and to improve and expand existing infrastructure.

It is also a part of an investment of $3 billion over 10 years to “develop and implement a comprehensive and connected mental health and addictions system,” according to a release sent on Monday.

The centre will bring together multiple health care professionals from across the brain sciences field, including psychiatry, neurology, imaging, neurosurgery and geriatric medicine.

“This project will help bring together key services currently scattered throughout the aging hospital. It will add more beds, expand outpatient clinic services, support better integrated care and provide doctors and researchers with the right tools, equipment and space to make new discoveries that could significantly improve quality of life and even save lives,” Elliott said.

It will also be the largest youth mental health service in the GTA, including:

  • An expanded family navigation project to support youth aged 13 to 26 and their families find and access the care they need
  • 12 new inpatient mental health beds (bringing the total number of beds to 48) that will provide more support for adults, youth and those who need intensive care
  • A centre for youth bipolar disorder and a centre for anxiety disorders
  • Neuromodulation services for those with severe medication and treatment resistant mental health disorders
  • One of the largest Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) clinics of its kind in Canada
  • The largest traumatic brain injury clinic of its kind in Ontario
  • Sleep disorder services and ambulatory clinics

“Sunnybrook’s new Garry Hurvitz Brain Sciences Centre will revolutionize brain and mental health care by connecting experts in a state-of-the-art facility that will foster innovation and discovery, while providing compassionate support for patients along their health care journey,” said Dr. Andy Smith, president and Chief Executive Officer of Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre.

Construction is expected to be completed by December 2022.

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