(10 pages of text)
Strongest Families is a 12-week distance treatment program for children with various mental health disorders and their families. The program was started in Nova Scotia in 2001 to address issues of stigma, lack of access to primary care specialists and difficulty of obtaining care, especially in rural areas. To meet these needs, the program utilizes long-distance communication methods such as weekly telephone meetings with trained personnel who are available days, nights and weekends, so access to care is easy and convenient for families. The founder of the program has already proven its efficacy in a major outcome paper that disseminated the supporting evidence to the research community. As chief executive officer of the Strong Families Institute, a federally registered not-for-profit organization, he and his founding partner, now chief operating officer, want to scale up the program to other provinces and eventually other countries, but they must get government ministries and other stakeholders on side in the interests of making mental health care widely available to the children and families who need it.
- To develop an understanding of the various challenges in delivering quality health care services to vulnerable populations (children, mentally ill, rural).
- To examine the issues of innovation adoption in Canadian health care systems and the challenges in implementing and scaling programming despite a strong evidence base for impact and high unmet population needs.
- To identify the challenges of changing multiple different organizational cultures and mindsets in the health care environment.
Health Care Services
Canada, Small, 2010
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