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Nova Scotia to increase mental health services for youth, children

Nova Scotia Health minister Leo Glavine. (File)

HALIFAX – The Nova Scotia government says it will take steps to improve mental health care for children and youth in response to recommendations from a minister’s advisory panel.

Health Minister Leo Glavine said Monday his department is adopting four of the panel’s recommendations, including one to improve mental health care through health centres in schools.

He says the province will invest $4.4 million by 2019-20 to add 51 new mental health clinicians and community outreach workers.

The province will also create a single centre that uses a toll-free line, the Internet and smart phones to provide mental health and addictions information for youth.

Glavine says the province will develop consistent mental health and addictions curriculum for schools from primary to Grade 6, as well as for high school students.

In addition, the Health Department is planning to ensure “all mental health service providers must receive evidence-based suicide risk assessment and suicide risk management training.”

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