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February 23, 2017
EMS providers to receive mental health first aid training
OTTAWA, Ontario — Mental Health First Aid Canada and St. John Ambulance announced a new agreement that will increase the number of instructors equipped to offer mental health first aid training.
MHFA Canada will train at least 40 St. John Ambulance instructors in mental health first aid, who will in turn teach the course on behalf of St. John Ambulance.
“Mental health first aid should be made as accessible to Canadians as physical first aid,” Louise Bradley, Mental Health Commission of Canada president and CEO, said. “Our partnership with St. John Ambulance is a significant step toward making that a reality.”
Mental health first aid is the help provided to a person developing a mental health problem or experiencing a mental health crisis. Just as physical first aid is administered to an injured person before medical treatment can be obtained, it is given until appropriate treatment is found or the crisis is resolved.
“Mental health problems and illnesses affect 1 in 5 Canadians in a given year,” Allan Smith, St. John Ambulance CEO, said. “As an industry leader in first aid, adding a focus on mental health will further St. John Ambulance’s mission to improve the health, safety and quality of life of Canadians at work, home and play.”
The MHFA Canada program aims to improve mental health literacy and provide the skills and knowledge to help people better manage potential or developing mental health problems in themselves, family members, friends or colleagues.