The Nipissing DSSAB has startling numbers involving mental health and addictions issues.    It says re-visits to emergency departments at Nipissing hospitals by this group have jumped 30 percent in the past four years.  Nipissing MPP Vic Fedeli says these are the numbers from the North East Local Health Integration Network.

Fedeli says it’s important to address this but the reality he says is we don’t because mental health and addictions is not treated as a health issue.   The Tory MPP says when people show up in a hospital with a broken leg, they’re treated very quickly.  He says the same doesn’t hold true of mental health and addictions patients.  He says people in this group can wait weeks and even months before they get to see someone who can address their needs.

Fedeli says until we treat mental health and addictions as a health issue and not a social one, this problem won’t ease up.  As for why the emergency department re-visits have spiked, it’s believed to be due to hospital cutbacks and a lack of community support programs.