Veterans Face Increasing Wait Times for Mental Health Support at Government Clinics


From The Epoch Times:

OTTAWA—Internal reports prepared by Veterans Affairs Canada show Canadian veterans have been waiting longer and longer in recent years to access psychiatric services and other medical support at government-run clinics.

The reports obtained by The Canadian Press through the access-to-information system are separate from the controversy surrounding the backlog of tens of thousands of applications from veterans for disability benefits.

They also follow a previous warning from the federal auditor general about former soldiers facing long waits for badly needed mental-health services, with the reports blaming the growing delays on a soaring demand for help over the past five years.

Experts say the new reports are concerning because of the importance in responding to requests for mental-health support as soon as possible to keep veterans from having to struggle on their own.

“As we know with mental health, timely access is key,” said Wounded Warriors Canada executive director Scott Maxwell, whose organization provides mental health services to veterans and first responders.

“Making people wait, they might not go back, they might not follow up, they might fall through the cracks into these gaps that we know exist across the mental health service space in Canada. And we have to make sure that we are avoiding that at all cost.”

Prepared quarterly, the reports provide information on how long veterans are having to wait before getting first appointments for several medical services at 10 operational stress injury clinics set up across Canada.

First established in 2002, the clinics are now located

Read the full report at The Epoch Times:


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