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Analyses of Strategies & Best Practices

Interim Report (2013) by Opening Minds anti-stigma program of Mental Health Commission of Canada
This interim report is the result of a systematic review of anti-stigma programs in Canada. The report outlines current knowledge on programs targeting different groups including youth. It summarizes activities to date, comments on lessons learned, and identifies future work and challenges. The overall goal of the program is to examine best practices and to create resources available on a national and international scale to communities who wish to undertake anti-stigma programs.

Recent Research on immigration related policies:

Metropolis is an international network for comparative research and public policy development on migration, diversity, and immigrant integration in cities in Canada and around the world. On the website you can find links to recent research in immigration, related policies and their discussion.

Mental Health Policies – Historical Overview
The question of how best to treat and support people living with mental illness has been raised repeatedly throughout the history of British Columbia. This background paper traces developments in provincial legislation and policy. It covers the period from 1894 – 2006.

Kirmayer, L.J. Multicultural Medicine and the Politics of Recognition. Journal of Medicine and Philosophy, 0: 1–14, 2011.
The author makes the point that cultural differences between healer and patient, not only has the potential to impede access to health care, but may affect accuracy of diagnosis and thus, effective treatment and outcome. Therefore, it is important that such differences be recognized and negotiated in order to establish a mutual common ground in which to effectuate appropriate solutions. Dr. Kirmayer also discusses the political aspect of medicine and suggests that the “inequalities in health status and access to care must begin with the recognition of difference as a legitimate political concern”. He thus exhorts those who create health policies and design these systems to be truly inclusive in order to respond to the cultural ‘particularities’ of all citizens.

Best practices in Mental Health and Substance Abuse
These seven documents, produced in 2002 and available in English, Chinese and Punjabi, are the result of the Best Practices working groups of the British Columbia’s Mental Health and Substance Use Reform initiative and covers such areas as family involvement, treatment, and housing, among others. Other useful resources are also available at this site.

Response to Human Rights Mental Health Strategy for Ontario: Public Consultation Paper
There is greater awareness of mental health and addiction issues than ever before, and increased recognition of the enormous impact of these conditions. One of the key drivers of greater recognition has been individuals who speak of their experience recognizing mental health and addiction problems, seeking help from others and finding hope. Individuals also describe instances of discrimination on the basis of their mental illness and addiction. One example that has been repeatedly documented is the use of the criminal record check to inappropriately exclude people with histories of mental illness from some jobs and volunteer opportunities. Legal protections against discrimination such as this must be strong and effective.

2009-10 Gap Analysis and Improvement Plan: Mental Health Promotion and Mental Disorder Prevention Prevention of Harms Associated with Substances Core Public Health Programs
This document provides the Provincial Health Services Authority’s gap analysis and improvement plan for two core programs, which were addressed together due to their overlapping scope. The two programs are Mental Health Promotion and the Prevention of Mental Health Disorders core program and the Prevention of Harms Associated with Substances core program.

Exploring positive mental health
This 2009 report by the Canadian Institute for Health Information, provides an analysis of what is meant by ‘positive mental health’ in the Canadian context. It provides research data which identifies some of the links between personal and societal variables, such as genetics and socio-economic status, and good mental health. It further provides an analysis of the characteristics of those who report high levels of positive mental health and concludes with strategies aimed at promoting positive mental health.

Cultural competence in health care: A PhD thesis examining inequalities and institutional roles in Belgium
Cultural competency has been recommended as a strategy to reduce health inequalities among migrants but its effects on health care are not well known. In this PhD thesis, Marie Dauvrin, a research fellow of the Fond de la Recherche Scientifique- FNRS of Belgium, argues that the concept of cultural competence neglects the roles played by the institutions and policies on the attitudes of health professionals. This thesis aims at challenging the health inequities experienced by migrants in involving the health professionals and the institutions at the meso and the macro levels. The questions examined include the extent to which culturally competent interventions contribute to the reduction of health inequalities and to the improvement of quality of care; and how cultural competence is implemented and diffused in the health services in Belgium. Best practices and political recommendations for improving equity in health for migrants beyond cultural competence are discussed.