Province adds 100 complex-care housing spaces across Greater Victoria region

Province adds 100 complex-care housing spaces across Greater Victoria region
Province of BC

The province has announced that it will be adding 100 complex-care housing spaces across the Greater Victoria region as part of Budget 2022.

These housing spaces will benefit people in the region living with complex mental-health and substance-use challenges who are at risk of, or experiencing homelessness.

Through Budget 2022, the province is investing $164 million over the next three years to open new complex-care housing services to serve as many as 500 vulnerable people throughout the province, including the 100 spaces in Greater Victoria.

“Complex-care housing is a groundbreaking approach for people with overlapping mental-health and substance-use challenges, traumatic and acquired brain injury,” said Sheila Malcolmson, Minister of Mental Health and Addictions. “Often left homeless or risking eviction, people who access complex-care housing will get supports where they live from social workers, nurses, peer workers and other health professionals.”

The complex-care housing, which will be delivered by Island Health in Greater Victoria, offers enhanced supports — including nurses, peer workers, social workers and other healthcare professionals — along with connections to treatment and other specialized services.

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These 100 spaces will be spread among several housing locations and are expected to be operational by 2023.

“I am pleased the province has taken the initiative to implement complex-care housing in B.C.’s communities,” said Lisa Helps, Mayor, City of Victoria. “Complex-care housing will make a real difference in the lives of our communities’ most vulnerable people by offering enhanced supports and services so urgently needed to increase their health and well-being.”

With complex-care housing, services follow the client, so if they move, the services move with them.

The services offered include:

  • medication-assisted treatment and recovery coaching;
  • overdose prevention services;
  • psychiatric services;
  • primary-care services;
  • family and peer supports;
  • for Indigenous residents, ceremonial supports, connection to Elders;
  • skills training and counselling; and
  • cooking and meal support.

“These complex-care health services will help the highest-needs clients living with significant mental-health and substance-use challenges receive the level of care and support they require,” said Leah Hollins, chair of the board of directors, Island Health. “We are grateful for the partnership with the provincial government, BC Housing and housing operators for supporting this most vulnerable population.”

The Province launched complex-care housing in January this year, with four sites located in Vancouver, Abbotsford and Surrey.

Graham CoxGraham Cox

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