“The Case for Publicly Funded Therapy”


An article in Canada’s Globe and Mail makes the case for expanding public funding of mental health services. Currently, visits to physicians and psychiatrists are covered by public health insurance, but most visits to psychologists, counselors and psychotherapists must be paid for privately.

“But for many Canadians diagnosed with a mental illness, the prescription is very different,” reports the Globe. “The treatment they receive, and how much of it they get, will largely be decided not on evidence-based best practices but on their employment benefits and income level: Those who can afford it pay for it privately. Those who cannot are stuck on long wait lists, or have to fall back on prescription medications. Or get no help at all. But according to a large and growing body of research, psychotherapy is not simply a nice-to-have option; it should be a front-line treatment, particularly for the two most costly mental illnesses in Canada: anxiety and depression – which also constitute more than 80 per cent of all psychiatric diagnoses.”

The case for publicly funded therapy (The Globe and Mail, May 22, 2015)