VANCOUVER – Premier Christy Clark announced a new mental health facility will be built at Vancouver General Hospital (VGH).

“Mental illness takes a terrible toll on not just the patient, but on their entire family as well,” said Premier Clark. “This new centre will help many of those families to cope as their loved one goes through the recovery process. I’d like to thank everyone who has been a part of making this facility a reality, especially Joseph and Rosalie Segal, whose financial contribution will go a long way in assisting British Columbians who suffer from mental illness.”

The new facility will consolidate mental-health inpatient and outpatient services. The new centre will replace the soon-to-be-demolished building on the VGH campus, which is no longer suitable for meeting the care needs of mental-health clients.

“Mental illness not only affects all ages and all walks of life, it also represents extensive costs to the health-care system,” said Health Minister Michael de Jong.
“The new mental-health centre at VGH will provide better care for those with mental illness and help reduce the strain on the health budget.”

The new mental-health centre is projected to cost approximately $73 million, but that may change once the business plan is finalized. The Province is contributing approximately $48 million to the project. The VGH & UBC Hospital Foundation and its corporate and private donors have committed $25 million toward the new mental health centre, and Vancouver philanthropists Joseph and Rosalie Segal gave $12 million towards the project, one of the largest-ever personal gifts for mental health in Canada.

The facility will improve health outcomes for British Columbians and help reduce indirect costs of mental illness in Vancouver.

Since 2001, more than $7 billion has been invested in health capital projects in British Columbia. Over the next three years, British Columbia’s health care system will benefit from investments, such as new mental health centre at Vancouver General Hospital, as part of a $2.3-billion health sector capital plan.