OPDI NewsToGo Issue #478 April 11, 2016
Highlights include: Toronto OPDI Peer Support Core Essentials (TM) Training; Training Expectations Webinar; Andrew Loku Update; Ontario Minimum Wage; Report on Fentanyl Crisis; CONNECT gets Funds; Ottawa Safe Injection Site Debate; Shock Treatment in the U.S.; MHCC Recovery-Oriented Practice Webinar; Jobs; News; and More.
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NEWS AND OPINIONS
1. Announcement of Toronto OPDI Peer Support Core Essentials ™ Training
Please see the attachment for exciting details about the May 16 - 20 training program taking place in Toronto. The registration form is enclosed. For more information, please email email@example.com.
2. OPDI Peer Support Core Essentials ™ Training Expectations Webinar
OPDI is offering the Training Expectations webinar for OPDI Peer Support Core Essentials Program at 12:00 pm on April 26th. This webinar is free for those enrolled in training as well as for potential participants and organizations contemplating sponsoring participants. Please pre-register by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
3. In Aftermath of Andrew Loku SIU Decision, CMHA Toronto Requests Inquest
An extensive interview with Executive Director Steve Lurie is part of the report:
Call an Inquest into Andrew Loku's Death, Canadian Mental Health Association Says
More viewpoints about a possible inquest are in this Toronto Star story:
Andrew Loku Inquest Urged by Canadian Mental Health Association
In another police shooting inquest involving someone with mental health issues, and who moreover was a frequent visitor at Toronto City Hall, the feedback from political staff is poignant:
Police Shooting Prompts Soul-Searching at City Hall
4. Ontario Minimum Wage Goes Up October 1, 2016
The Ontario Minimum Wage will rise to $11.40 October 1st 2016. Other classifications will also change at that time:
Last week, we noted that the government rolled back its budget increases in drug costs for seniors. Here is a media account of what happened:
Ontario's Reversal on Seniors' Drugs To Cost Government an Extra $100 Million
Legislation has been passed that recognizes PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder) in the case of first responders:
Ontario Passes Legislation to Support PTSD in First Responders
Puzzling though, nurses were left out of the law:
Ontario PTSD Legislation For First Responders Celebrated by Some, but Nurses Left Out
In a related story, the Mississauga Fire Department has proactively begun training to help employees cope with PTSD:
Mississauga Firefighters First in Ontario to Receive New Mental-Health Training
The province has created two new youth employment programs:
Ontario Launches New Youth Employment Programs in Time for Summer
5. Globe and Mail Feature Series: The Fentanyl Crisis
The newspaper's investigative team has turned its attention to addiction with two articles:
A Killer High: How Canada Got Addicted to Fentanyl
Fentanyl's Deadly Path
Moreover, in a Canadian Medical Association Journal article, it was found that half of those prescribed fentanyl patches are at risk because their doctors are incorrectly prescribing the opioids:
Fentanyl Patches Often Unsafely Prescribed, Canadian Study Suggests
Doctors' Reckless Prescribing of Fentanyl Largely to Blame for Deadly Overdoses: Expert
6. CONNECT for Mental Health in London Receives Funding Letter from Ministry of Health
After inspired reporting, and an exchange between an Conservative MPP and Minister Eric Hoskins in Question Period, this peer support initiative has received a letter of funding from Queen's Park for the new fiscal year:
Finally, Program to Connect with Cash
7. Innovative Practice: Waterloo-Wellington LHIN Walk-In Clinic Offers Saturday Drop-in Counselling
Weekend hours for family counselling are now available in this city:
Saturday Walk-in Counselling Now Available in Kitchener
8. Visiting an Assumption: Spree Killers Must be Mentally Ill
The New York Times looks at various mass murders and connects with a psychiatrist who has built up a database of such incidents:
Investigating the Minds of Mass Killers
9. Canadian Pharmaceutical Companies To Disclose Payments to Physicians and Health Groups
This action is long overdue. However, no individual breakdown of payments to doctors will be done:
Canadian Drug Companies Agree to Divulge How Much They Pay Doctors, Health Groups
10. City of Ottawa at Loggerheads on Safe Injection Sites
The Mayor and Police Chief are opposed although a coalition of drug treatment agencies and the Board of Public Health want it:
Battle Lines Drawn on Proposed Safe Injection Site for Ottawa
A No-Brainer: Drug Treatment Agencies Want a Safe Injection Site in Ottawa
Supervised Drug Injection Site Support from Ontario Public Health "Huge", Say Advocates
11. DEA in the United States May Reclassify Marijuana's Drug Status By Summer
Cannabis is currently deemed a drug "with no medical use and a high potential for abuse". This rating may be under review by the Drug Enforcement Administration:
The DEA Will Decide Whether to Change Course on Marijuana by July
12. Schizophrenia and the Sperm Donor Lawsuit
An Ontario couple has initiated a class action lawsuit against a sperm donor clinic, after finding out their baby's father had a mental health diagnosis:
He Was the Perfect Sperm Donor. Then 26 Families Found Out He Wasn't.
Common sense tells us that there is not 100% correlation between parents with mental health problems and their offspring. This article by two British psychologists takes a closer look at the evidence:
There Are No Schizophrenia Genes. Here's Why.
RESEARCH HIGHLIGHTS AND RESOURCES
13. Is There Any Reason Why Telemedicine Couldn't Be More Popular?
The prospect of seeing more telemedicine visits in the United States is rising and this article paints some reasons why:
The Doctor Will Logon Now: Why Telemedicine is Catching On With Consumers
14. Update on Regulation of Shock Treatment Devices in the United States
Reclassification of ECT and mandated warnings to potential patients may be in the cards:
Psychiatric Shock Therapy, Long Controversial, May Face Fresh Restrictions
15. The Truth Behind WebMD (With Advice About Which Medical Websites to Use)
This article examines a very popular health website and the cozy (if not fully disclosed) relationship with drug companies and how it might affect its posted medical advice:
The Truth About WebMD, A Hypochondriac's Nightmare, and Big Pharma's Dream
16. A Refresher: Police Records Checks
This legal aid firm offers a nifty summary of the main points of the new police records check policy as it applies in Ontario:
Check Please! New Standardized Rules for Police Records Checks in Ontario
ADVICE (NOT PEER-REVIEWED)
17. What Kind of Introvert Are You? Take This Quiz to Find Out?
The test is based on a book "Quiet":
So Apparently There Are 4 Kinds of Introversion
18. A Call for Proper Testing of Smartphone Mental Health Apps
The author of this piece notes that there are a large number of these applications available online, but that testing for their outcomes has not kept pace:
Mental Health: There's an App for That
19. If You Live in Public Housing in Toronto and Rogers Serves Your Building Cheap Internet May be On the Way
The Connected for Success Program offers $9.99 a month Internet without a credit check to eligible tenants:
Rogers to Expand Low-Cost Internet to Social Housing Tenants
OPPORTUNITIES AND ANNOUNCEMENTS
20. Job Postings
Just a reminder that the Employment Works Coordinator posting at CAMH is still posted.
21. Toronto Safe Injection Site Consultations (online and public events)
You can learn more by checking out this link.
22. MHCC Recovery-Oriented Practice Webinar
The next webinar on Thursday, April 21st at 1:00 pm features Fiona Wilson from St. Joseph's Healthcare in Hamilton and Brian McKinnon of Alternatives in Toronto, who will be speaking on recovery as a personal journey and how it is apprroached through a working alliance between service providers and people with lived experience:
Join the Next Recovery Webinar
23. SSO Publicizes Police, Police Services, and Community Safety Consultation
The Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services is consulting with the public on a new provincial plan for policing, called the Strategy for a Safer Ontario. The ministry is re-examining the nature of police and the role of police officers since the Police Services Act became law in 1990. The ministry is seeking feedback on a number of topics including:
- Improving interactions between the police and people with mental health or addiction issues
- Improving police accountability and governance of police services boards
- Ensuring police oversight bodies (e.g. Special Investigations Unit, Office of the Independent Police Review Director) work the way they're supposed to and have clear mandates
- Clarifying the duties of police officers and modernizing police recruitment and training programs
People with mental illness come into contact with the criminal justice system at increased and disproportionate rates compared to the general population. There are several reasons for this, including the fact that police are often the first responders to situations involving people in a mental health crisis.
Now is the time to provide your input to the ministry on how to improve interactions between police and people with mental health or addictions issues.
HOW TO PARTICIPATE
Share your feedback by Friday April 29, 2016 by completing a confidential online survey found here.
For background and more information about the consultation, click here.
To read a past SSO submission related to this topic, click here.
24. Empowerment Council At CAMH Asks for Views on Physician Assisted Death
Lucy Costa posted on the CAMH Blog and is looking for your responses:
How Do Mental Health Clients Feel About Physician Assisted Death?
25. Lawson Foundation Announces New Funding Opportunity for Diabetes Projects
OPDI and CMHA Ontario have taken advantage of this funding in the past for their Diabetes and Mental Health Peer Support Project.
Learn how to apply for funding here. Deadline is April 18th.
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