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COVID-19

COVID-19 Vaccine for children aged 5 to 11

December 2, 2021

Last week, children aged 5 to 11 became eligible to book their COVID-19 vaccination. While this is a great step forward in the fight against Covid-19, many parents, caregivers and children may be nervous and have questions or concerns.

Kids Health First has updated their website with resources targeted for younger children, parents/caregivers, and healthcare providers to help children and families make an informed decision about getting vaccinated.

Please visit https://kidshealthfirst.ca/  for more information.

Ontario’s Child and Youth Mental Health Lead Agency Consortium

Child and Youth Mental Health Lead Agency Consortium Applauds Investment to Help Respond to COVID-19 Pressures

December 18, 2020

On behalf of the 31 members of the Child and Youth Mental Health Lead Agency Consortium (LAC), consortium co-chairs Karen Ingebrigtson and Linda Dugas applaud the Government of Ontario’s announcement today of $29.5 M in one-time core services funding and $300,000 for secure treatment to address anticipated COVID-19 related pressures as Ontario moves into wave two of the pandemic.

The pandemic has made the safe delivery of mental health services to children, youth and families increasingly more difficult for the child and youth mental health sector. Lead Agency Consortium cochairs Ingebrigtson and Dugas said, “The one-time investment will help core service providers of mental health services and secure treatment to properly support Ontario children, youth, and families, as well as provide safe workplaces for the many mental health workers who deliver their care.” “Ontario’s lead agencies welcome all new investments that support the delivery of community-based mental health services,” said Ingebrigtson and Dugas.

The new investment —part of the Government’s overall investment of $147 M in mental health services across the lifespanwill help address the growing list of funding pressures as a result of COVID-19. The current pandemic serves to underscore how the level of annualized funding to support child and youth wellness is inadequate. As health care system planners, lead agencies are also reviewing what additional investments are needed to adequately support the mental health needs of Ontario children and youth through and beyond the pandemic.

To read the press release from the Child and Youth Mental Health Lead Agency Consortium (LAC), click here:

COVID-19

COMPASS IS SEEING CLIENTS IN-PERSON, BY APPOINTMENT ONLY

July 6, 2020

Reminder:

Compass is now seeing clients in-person, by APPOINTMENT ONLY. If you are looking for Child and Youth Mental Health Services, please call our toll-free number 1-800-815-7126. Walk-in’s will be not accepted.

We are continuing to offer our services by phone or video conferencing.

Click here for more information: https://compassne.ca/novel-coronavirus-covid-19/

COVID-19

COMPASS IS SEEING CLIENTS IN-PERSON, BY APPOINTMENT ONLY

June 30, 2020

Effective July 6th, Compass will begin seeing clients in-person, by APPOINTMENTS ONLY.

At this time, if you are looking for Child and Youth Mental Health Services, please call our toll-free number 1-800-815-7126. Walk-in’s will be not accepted.

We are continuing to offer our services by phone or video conferencing.

Click here for more information: https://compassne.ca/novel-coronavirus-covid-19/

COVID-19

Ontario Parent Survey Launch

May 28, 2020

McMaster University and Offord Centre for Children Studies released a survey to gather information on the health and well-being of caregivers and children with a focus on your experiences since the COVID-19 pandemic started. Please take a few minutes to fill out this survey.

COVID-19

COMPASS COVID-19 UPDATE

March 16, 2020

Due to the ongoing COVID-19 virus situation, Compass is being proactive by cancelling all group programs (SNAP, FRIENDS, Triple-P) effective immediately, until further notice to assist with slowing down the transmission of the virus.

In addition, Compass will no longer be allowing face to face meetings with clients and walk-ins. Clients looking for mindSPACE services will be told to call the toll free number 1-800-815-7126 in order to speak to a clinician.

We apologize for the inconvenience.

COVID-19

Talking to Kids About the COVID-19 virus

March 12, 2020


News of the coronavirus COVID-19 is everywhere, from the front page of all the papers to the playground at school. Many parents are wondering how to bring up the epidemic in a way that will be reassuring and not make kids more worried than they already may be. Here is some advice from the experts at the Child Mind Institute.

  • Don’t be afraid to discuss the coronavirus. Most children will have already heard about the virus or seen people wearing face masks, so parents shouldn’t avoid talking about it. Not talking about something can actually make kids worry more. Look at the conversation as an opportunity to convey the facts and set the emotional tone. “You take on the news and you’re the person who filters the news to your kid,” explains Janine Domingues, PhD, a child psychologist at the Child Mind Institute. Your goal is to help your children feel informed and get fact-based information that is likely more reassuring than whatever they’re hearing from their friends or on the news.
  • Be developmentally appropriate. Don’t volunteer too much information, as this may be overwhelming. Instead, try to answer your child’s questions. Do your best to answer honestly and clearly. It’s okay if you can’t answer everything; being available to your child is what matters.
  • Take your cues from your child. Invite your child to tell you anything they may have heard about the coronavirus, and how they feel. Give them ample opportunity to ask questions. You want to be prepared to answer (but not prompt) questions. Your goal is to avoid encouraging frightening fantasies.
  • Deal with your own anxiety. “When you’re feeling most anxious or panicked, that isn’t the time to talk to your kids about what’s happening with the coronavirus,” warns Dr. Domingues. If you notice that you are feeling anxious, take some time to calm down before trying to have a conversation or answer your child’s questions.
  • Be reassuring. Children are very egocentric, so hearing about the coronavirus on the news may be enough to make them seriously worry that they’ll catch it. It’s helpful to reassure your child about how rare the coronavirus actually is (the flu is much more common) and that kids actually seem to have milder symptoms.
  • Focus on what you’re doing to stay safe. An important way to reassure kids is to emphasize the safety precautions that you are taking. Jamie Howard, PhD, a child psychologist at the Child Mind Institute, notes, “Kids feel empowered when they know what to do to keep themselves safe.” We know that the coronavirus is transmitted mostly by coughing and touching surfaces. The CDC recommends thoroughly washing your hands as the primary means of staying healthy. So remind kids that they are taking care of themselves by washing their hands with soap and water for 20 seconds (or the length of two “Happy Birthday” songs) when they come in from outside, before they eat, and after blowing their nose, coughing, sneezing or using the bathroom. If kids ask about face masks, explain that the experts at the CDC say they aren’t necessary for most people. If kids see people wearing face masks, explain that those people are being extra cautious.
  • Stick to routine. “We don’t like uncertainty, so staying rooted in routines and predictability is going to be helpful right now,” advises Dr. Domingues. This is particularly important if your child’s school or daycare shuts down. Make sure you are taking care of the basics just like you would during a spring break or summer vacation. Structured days with regular mealtimes and bedtimes are an essential part of keeping kids happy and healthy.
  • Keep talking. Tell kids that you will continue to keep them updated as you learn more. “Let them know that the lines of communication are going to be open,” says Dr. Domingues. “You can say, ‘Even though we don’t have the answers to everything right now, know that once we know more, mom or dad will let you know, too.’”

To read more, please visit: https://childmind.org/article/talking-to-kids-about-the-coronavirus/

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If you or someone you know is in crisis or feeling overwhelmed, please contact Crisis Intervention Services – Health Sciences North. 24 hour hotline—365 days/year 1.877.841.1101

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MINDSPACE offers mental health services without an appointment for children and youth under 18.