By Jenn Watt
Published April 26 2018
For those struggling with low mood anxiety or depression a new provincial initiative is offering workbooks coaching and videos at no cost to the consumer.
BounceBack workbooks are delivered in the mail coaching sessions available by phone and videos are posted online for those seeking help for mental health issues.
“The fact that it’s OHIP covered that’s a big swing in government policy” said Jack Veitch health promoter and educator with the Canadian Mental Health Association Haliburton Kawartha Pine Ridge Branch.
The program is well suited to the Haliburton region where people often live in isolated areas and transportation is difficult to arrange and costly.
BounceBack is free for anyone with a health card and requires a referral from a doctor (although it can be through a doctor at a walk-in clinic or other venue).
“This is a course that’s fantastic for people who have been experiencing low mood depression or anxiety. It’s a correspondence style course which means materials get mailed right to your door and it’s based on the model of cognitive behavioural therapy” Veitch said in an interview with the paper.
“This will be primarily for those that are trying to access psychotherapy that traditionally have not been able to … perhaps because they’re living in a remote community or they don’t have the transportation or the cost being a free program that’s a real bonus” he said.
BounceBack is for anyone 15 or older but is not for everyone which is why talking to a doctor is the best way to sign up.
Participants can go at their own pace with the workbooks. BounceBack includes three to six telephone coaching sessions and you can leave the program at any time.
Some topics covered include assertiveness changing unhelpful or extreme thinking and overcoming sleep problems.
Veitch has worked for CMHA for the last 11 years and said he’s noticed a big shift in how people view mental health issues.
He said society has become more open in talking about mental health and the stigma is lessening though there is still a long way to go.
On April 10 he was the featured speaker at the Haliburton Highlands Chamber of Commerce breakfast where he spoke about the role one’s beliefs have on behaviour and mood.
Veitch is available to talk to businesses or other groups about promoting good mental health. You can contact him at 705-748-6687 ext. 1015 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
To find out more about BounceBack go to www.bouncebackontario.ca . You can find a referral form on the website along with more detail on the program.