The governments of Canada and Yukon work together to increase access to treatment options for people with substance use disorders

The opioid crisis is devastating individuals, families and communities across the country. Without increased access to effective, evidence-based treatment options, people with substance use disorder will continue to be at risk for overdose.

Today, on behalf of the Honourable Ginette Petitpas Taylor, Minister of Health, Member of Parliament, the Honourable Larry Bagnell and the Honourable Pauline Frost, Yukon’s Minister of Health and Social Services, announced a bilateral agreement under the Government of Canada’s Emergency Treatment Fund.

The agreement provides more than $945,000—$500,000 from the Government of Canada and $445,104 from Yukon Territory—to increase access to quality treatment services for people with substance use disorder.

This funding will be used to improve, integrate and increase services provided by Yukon’s Opioid Treatment Service (OTS). This includes:

  • enhancing access to wrap-around services, such as social work, psychiatry and mental health services;
  • integrating long-term prescribing of methadone as an alternative to opioids, as part of a comprehensive treatment service (methadone maintenance treatment); and
  • adding a full-time mental health nurse to the OTS team and enhancing opioid agonist program services.

The governments of Canada and Yukon will continue to work together to increase treatment services for people who are seeking help for substance use disorders.

Opioid-related overdoses continue to have a devastating impact in communities across Canada, including in Yukon. This bilateral agreement will facilitate and increase access to essential treatment services in the territory to help people with substance use disorder. We must continue to work in a comprehensive and collaborative way to help Canadians access treatment and supports.

The Honourable Larry Bagnell
Member of Parliament

Yukon has been deeply affected by the opioid crisis and it continues to impact communities across the territory. This funding will increase and improve the services and treatment options available to those with substance use disorders in Yukon. Enhancing our support systems and integrating more long-term strategies around opioid use will help to reduce the harmful impacts on communities in our territory.

The Honourable Pauline Frost
Minister of Health and Social Services, Yukon

 

Backgrounder 

The opioid crisis is an ongoing public health issue affecting individuals, families and communities across Canada. As part of its efforts to address this crisis, the Government of Canada is working with all provinces and territories to increase access to treatment services for substance use disorders.

The bilateral agreement between the Government of Canada and the Government of Yukon under the Emergency Treatment Fund (ETF) will be used to improve, integrate and increase services provided by Yukon Territory’s Opioid Treatment Service (OTS). This includes:

  • enhancing access to wrap-around services, such as social work, psychiatry and mental health services;
  • integrating the long-term prescribing of methadone as an alternative to opioids as part of a comprehensive treatment service (methadone maintenance treatment); and
  • adding a full-time mental health nurse to the OTS team and enhancing opioid agonist program services.

Emergency Treatment Fund

Announced as part of the Budget 2018 funding to help address the opioid crisis, the Emergency Treatment Fund provides one-time emergency funding of $150 million for provinces and territories to improve access to evidence-based treatment services. This fund is cost-shared with provinces and territories and will bring the total investment in emergency treatment to approximately $300 million once bilateral agreements are signed with all provinces and territories.

The federal government has allocated funding based on the severity of the opioid crisis in the province or territory and the size of the population in the jurisdiction. This ensures that provinces and territories most impacted by the crisis have enough support, and that other jurisdictions are able to prepare for possible future impacts. Federal funding is matched by the province or territory beyond the first $250,000 and the jurisdiction has up to five years to match the initial investment of money from the federal government.

As part of each bilateral agreement, an action plan will be posted on the Canada.ca website. In addition, each province and territory will be asked to report at regular intervals to share the progress made to increase access to innovative and evidence-based treatment in their jurisdiction.

For more information on federal actions on the opioid crisis, please visit Canada.ca/Opioids.

Contact 

Thierry Bélair
Office of Ginette Petitpas Taylor
Minister of Health
613-957-0200

Media Relations
Health Canada
613-957-2983
hc.media.sc@canada.ca

Julie Ménard
Communications, Health and Social Services
Government of Yukon
867-667-8478

Public Inquiries:
613-957-2991
1-866 225-0709

News release #: 
18-271