Skip to content

Province inches closer to high level health care service in Terrace

More than $250 million to be spent on complex care across the province
Sonder House, the social housing development behind Northern Health’s health unit headquarters in Terrace, could factor in plans to provide a high level of mental health and addictions care in the northwest. (Staff photo)

Councillor Zimmerman shared correspondence from the Honourable Ravi

Kahlon, Ministry of Housing, that was included on the January 23, 2023 Regular

Council Meeting agenda. It was noted there was no commitment from the

Province regarding next steps on Complex Care Housing. At the meeting Council

resolved to send a letter to the Ministry of Mental Health and Addictions and

Northern Health to request an update on Complex Care Treatment in Terrace

and when it will be delivered.

Northern Health has not yet come to Council to discuss how Complex Care will

be rolled out in Terrace. Staff noted that there are three service models of

complex care housing available: Distributed, Multi-unit in Supportive Housing,

and Small Group homes. These range in levels of support and staff-to-client ratio.

The provincial government is coming closer to announcing its plan for a high level of care in Terrace for people dealing with overlapping mental health, substance use and health issues.

Called complex care, Terrace was added to the list of locations around B.C. as the northwestern home for the specialized service last year by the provincial mental health and addictions ministry.

“The necessary partnerships are being built to bring this important, life-saving service to people in the northwest. We will have more to say about complex care housing in Terrace this spring,” said the ministry in a provided statement.

The ministry began announcing locations for complex care housing around the province last year and is accelerating the roll out by committing itself in the 2023 budget to spend $169 million over the next three years. It will also spend $97 million to operate those facilities.

“Comprehensive support services offered in the complex-care housing units will include traditional wellness workers, Elders, healers, knowledge holders and land-based healing programs,” a statement from the mental health and addictions ministry last year added when Terrace emerged as a location for northwestern complex care services.

“The spaces will offer a variety of other supports, depending on individual needs, such a mental-health workers, overdose prevention services, medication management, peer supports, skills training, and cooking and meal support.”

So far specific details for complex care housing in Vancouver, Surrey, Abbotsford, Victoria, the Fraser Valley, Kelowna, Kamloops, Powell River on the Sunshine Coast and Bella Coola on the central coast have been released.

Although specific local details have not been released, Dec. 2022 minutes of the City of Terrace’s housing committee indicate there’ll be 10 complex care spaces assigned to the city.

Five of the 10 individuals will be living at Sonder House, the housing complex located adjacent to the Northern Health Authority’s health unit and administrative headquarters, the minutes state.

Their care will be provided by Northern Health.

About the Author: Rod Link

Read more