Foundation launches mental health initiative

St. Boniface Hospital Foundation has launched a $1.6 million fundraising campaign for renovations and improvements to the McEwen Building, in which the Hospital provides dedicated inpatient and outpatient mental health services for thousands of Manitobans annually.

“We want to create a space that does not feel like a hospital ward,” said Dr. Michael Phillips, Director of Inpatient Care, Mental Health, St. Boniface Hospital. “Patients appreciate privacy and a comfortable environment. The process of recovery is often difficult, but we hope providing a physical space that is amenable to healing will help facilitate this part of the journey for patients and their families.”

The McEwen Building was originally a residence for medical students – in the 1980s, the building was converted to house the Hospital’s Mental Health Program. Since then, it has been home to mental health services ranging from psychiatric care to occupational therapy for adult patients with mental illnesses.

Now, the Foundation is asking donors for help: the building is in need of vital upgrades to ensure all patients continue to receive optimal care in a healing environment.

Each year, 1 in 5 Canadians will personally experience a mental illness.

  • The inpatient program has 34 beds and admits more than 300 patients annually.
  • The outpatient program sees more than 14,000 visits annually.
  • A Hospital-wide Critical Incident Stress Management Program for staff is coordinated through the Mental Health Program, serving more than 4220 staff annually (including casual employees).
  • The average patient stay is 25 days; some patients are admitted for fewer than three days, and some are treated as inpatients for more than a year.

“We know that the public is as inspired and excited as we are to see this happen,” says Vince Barletta, President and CEO, St. Boniface Hospital Foundation. “Time and again, our community has rallied for a cause and made life-changing progress for patients at the Hospital. We are once again reaching out to Manitobans to help the Hospital create the best healing environment possible for mental health patients.”

You can help thousands of patients – donate now.