Health and Community Services
December 13, 2018
Therapy Assistance Online Expanded Province-wide
The Honourable John Haggie, Minister of Health and Community Services, is commending the province’s four regional health authorities for their efforts to increase mental health services and supports for Newfoundlanders and Labradorians through Therapy Assistance Online (TAO Connect), an e-health technology service.
Launched in February 2018, Newfoundland and Labrador was the first provincial government in Canada to introduce this service, which combines online education materials with brief clinical support with a counsellor by phone, chat or video conferencing. TAO is a clinically-proven, cutting-edge technology that increases access to services when and where people need them, including in their own homes.
TAO is for people aged 16 and over, and is available in English and French, including the services of a designated French speaking counsellor. TAO is also available as a self-help option. Since it was first launched, over 300 people have availed of the service.
The service was first used by students at Memorial University and piloted with 15 community clinics with positive early results. For information on this service, individuals should visit: Bridge the gApp at www.bridgethegapp.ca or contact their local mental health and addictions office. They can also call 811 to locate the nearest mental health and addictions office.
In the Way Forward: A Vision for Sustainability and Growth in Newfoundland and Labrador, the Provincial Government committed to transform the way mental health and addictions services are delivered. The province continues to support this vision through the implementation of Towards Recovery: The Mental Health and Addictions Action Plan for Newfoundland and Labrador.
This initiative also delivers on commitments in The Way Forward to provide better services and better outcomes for residents. The Way Forward outlines all actions the Provincial Government is taking to achieve a strong, diversified province with a high standard of living, and can be viewed at thewayforward.gov.nl.ca.Quotes
“Many studies in 20 countries have shown this method to be as effective as hour-long, in-person individual therapy for common disorders. The use of TAO has shown a significant improvement in overall mental health and a greater sense of well-being for individuals in our province who have used it. Our goal is to help people manage their day-to-day struggles around things like anxiety and depression.”
Honourable John Haggie
Minister of Health and Community Services
“At TAO, we want people to receive the help they need without feeling like they need to schedule their lives around it. We cannot control when mental health issues might occur, and many times, they appear when we are alone or in the middle of a busy day. We believe the key to increasing accessibility is through supplemental technology available to the public at all times, and we are honored to contribute to the overall mental health initiative that has been put in place in Newfoundland and Labrador.”
Dr. Sherry Benton
Founder and Chief Science Officer, TAO Connect
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2018 12 13 12:15 p.m.