Access to local mental health services is much faster now due to a new service available from the Mental Health and Addiction Regional Centre and Hawkesbury and District General Hospital (HGH).

The centre is now offering free, walk-in, single-session psychotherapy sessions each Wednesday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at 580 Spence Avenue in Hawkesbury, which is located next to Taco Bell.  No appointment is necessary, and clients must be aged 16 or older.

HGH Director of Mental Health and Addictions Geneviève Arturi said that the single sessions allow the five therapists on staff to identify the needs of clients and give them strategies to use after.  She acknowledged that the approach does not solve all of a client’s problems but is meant to meet the need for rapid response.  Arturi said that clients in need of more than one session will be directed into the other programs HGH offers.

Canadian Mental Health Association Champlain East Executive Director Joanne Ledoux-Moshonas said that one in 10 Ontario residents has difficulty accessing mental health services.

Arturi said that up to eight clients per day can be seen at the new walk-in service.  Telephone appointments can also be arranged by calling 1-844-304-1414.

“No situation is too small or to big to access our clinic,” said HGH Chief of Staff, Dr. Julie Maranda.

The walk-in psychotherapy clinic at HGH was made possible through at $20,000 donation from the Bell Canada Let’s Talk Foundation.