Adult Mental Health Services

The Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre provides acute care adult mental health services including: emergency services; short-term inpatient assessment; assessment, stabilization and short-term inpatient treatment; discharge planning; outpatient services; and, consultation, education, coordination, and integration with other healthcare services including with primary care providers.

Adult Mental Health Services is committed to the development of a well-functioning interdisciplinary team which includes medicine (psychiatry and Family Medicine), nursing, occupational therapy, peer support, pharmacy, psychology, recreation therapy, social work, and spiritual care. The service emphasizes interdisciplinary assessment, consultation and intervention to provide comprehensive, holistic and culturally appropriate care. The well-being and functionality of the team is critical to successful patient outcomes as staff is the largest resource.

The model of care is a fluid structure integrated with community services without duplicating them and offering streamlined and common intake for some services. Services are targeted to people 16 years of age and older with serious and/or acute mental illness. The focus is on individuals who have more complex service needs rather than people who can be adequately served by community services. The model provides for outreach and/or strong links with other service agencies in order to prevent service gaps, ensure continuity of care, and maintain links with people in difficulty.

The Health Sciences Centre is designated as a Schedule 1 facility. Currently, our mental health services include:

  • Inpatient services
  • Mental Health Assessment Team
  • Brief Intervention Treatment Team
  • Community Treatment Order Team
  • Assertive Community Treatment Teams (located at 289 Munro St., Thunder Bay)
  • Shared Mental Health Care Service (in partnership with the Fort William Family Health Network)


Inpatient Services

Our inpatient services consist of 30 beds. Average length of stay is 17 days.

Admission Criteria

  • 16-64 years of age, with certain exceptions (Those under the age of 16 are admitted to the Child and Adolescent Mental Health Unit)
  • Serious and/or acute mental illness
  • Medically stable (i.e. no life-threatening or serious physical injury, etc.)
  • Predominant problem is not related to a developmental handicap or an acquired brain injury

Mental Health Assessment Team and Brief Intervention Treatment Team

The Mental Health Assessment Team and Brief Intervention Treatment Team are adjunct services to the Emergency Department (ED) at the Health Sciences Centre for assessment and consultation of people who present with mental health problems, as well as brief mental health follow-up on an urgent basis. These teams are staffed by RNs in the ED and an interdisciplinary team in outpatient follow-up.

Assertive Community Treatment Teams

Location: 289 Munro Street, Thunder Bay, P7A 2N3

Manager: Fern Tarzia
Phone: (807) 683-4363

Intake Coordinator: Pauline Bodnar
Phone: (807) 346-8300

Assertive Community Treatment is a community based client-centred, recovery-oriented, specialized mental health service. Its focus is on providing rehabilitation, treatment, and support to people with a serious mental illness based on principles of psychosocial rehabilitation. Many different health care professions make up this team including:

  • Peer support specialist
  • Medicine (Psychiatry and Family Medicine)
  • Nursing
  • Occupational therapy
  • Psychology
  • Therapeutic recreation
  • Social work

Physician or primary care provider referral is not required. Please call (807) 346-8300 for more information.

Community Treatment Order Service

Regional Coordinator: (807) 684-6442
Case Manager: (807) 684-6428
Fax: (807) 684-5870

A Community Treatment Order (CTO) Coordinator is available to provide education, consultation, support and advice about CTOs to physicians, families and agencies throughout the region. A case manager is available to provide community-based support for people on CTOs in Thunder Bay.

Shared Mental Health Care Service

Location: 1260 Golf Links Road
Phone: (807) 626-1234

The Shared Mental Health Care Service is a partnership between Adult Mental Health services and the Fort William Family Health Network. Two counsellors are available on-site to see patients referred by a clinic physician. Patients attend six sessions on average, providing mental health care for those who are experiencing mild to moderate symptoms in support of the patient’s primary care provider. Psychiatric consultation is also available through the service.

Other Resources

In-depth reference regarding the many variations of mental illness may be found on the Canadian Mental Health Association website.

Further information with respect to mental illness and recovery for people in the Thunder Bay region, may be found on the "with an OPEN mind" website.