Durham Mental Health Services and Lakeridge Health Join to Create a More Accessible Regional Mental Health and Addictions System

Posted on Thursday August 20, 2020

Voluntary Integration is moving forward between the two organizations

Durham, ON - A voluntary integration between Lakeridge Health and Durham Mental Health Services (DMHS) is moving forward, creating a more connected community mental health and addictions system serving Durham Region.

As Durham’s population grows, there has been a dramatic rise in people admitted to Lakeridge Health for mental health care – a 50 per cent increase in the last 10 years. The innovative partnership will combine Lakeridge Health’s acute mental health and community addictions treatment services with DMHS’s expertise in community-based mental health to create a comprehensive and accessible regional mental health and addictions system.

“By bringing together the complementary mental health and addictions services of both organizations, it will be easier for people to access the services that they need, in their own communities,” said Sharon Cochran, Chair of the Board of Trustees, Lakeridge Health. “This innovative partnership will create one coordinated mental health and addictions system that provides caring and supportive care to people whether they are in the hospital, the community or a residential setting.”

“Durham Mental Health Services has long recognized the need for a single mental health and addictions system in our community,” said Rob Adams, CEO, Durham Mental Health Services. “We understood that we could better meet the changing and diverse needs of our clients by joining together with Pinewood Centre. This partnership will open new possibilities for clients, particularly for those living with both mental health concerns and addictions.”

Over the first half of 2020, Durham Mental Health Services and Lakeridge Health conducted a due diligence process to determine the benefits and risks of an integration. Input from over 70 community agencies offered compelling evidence that a voluntary integration would bring significant benefits to clients, the community and the health system overall.

“Today, individuals, families and service providers often struggle to navigate the mental health and addictions system to get connected to needed services,” said Susan deRyk, Interim President and CEO, Lakeridge Health. “Building on the long-standing partnership between Durham Mental Health Services and Lakeridge Health, this enhanced system will mean one care team, one care plan and more comprehensive community supports for each person.”

The 2000 clients who are currently served by both organizations will benefit from having mental health and addictions support available through one integrated service.

Over the coming months, DMHS CEO Rob Adams will continue to play a pivotal leadership role through the transition to the integrated entity. After 30 years of growing DMHS into a leading and influential community mental health organization, Rob will step down once the amalgamation process is complete, paving the way for the new mental health and addictions system in Durham Region.


For more information, contact:
Sharon Navarro
Lakeridge Health