capital district mental Health program services

The Capital District Mental Health Program provides mental health services for adults in the Halifax Regional Municipality and West Hants. Its services are publicly funded, which means there is no direct cost to people engaged in services or their families. The program is complex and includes forensic mental health services as well. Here we provide a list of services, with a brief description and a contact number. Some require a referral from a family doctor or other health professional; however, it is still valuable to know what services are available. If your family member or you think that one or more of these services may be beneficial, talk to one of your family member’s health professionals. You may also want to contact the service directly to find out more.

Services that do not require a referral from a family doctor or other health care professional are marked with an asterisk (*).

Community Mental Health*

Community Mental Health includes a team of mental health professionals who provide services on an outpatient basis that can help people to manage mental illness and improve their mental health and well-being. The team works with individuals, families, community organizations, family physicians and others.


Bayers Road Community Mental Health
Suite 109, Bayers Road Centre
7071 Bayers Road, Halifax

Bedford/Sackville Community Mental Health
Cobequid Community Health Centre
40 Freer Lane, Lower Sackville 865-3663

Cole Harbour/Eastern HRM Community Mental Health
Cole Harbour Place 51 Forest Hills Parkway, Dartmouth

Dartmouth Community Mental Health
Belmont House
33 Alderney Drive, Dartmouth

West Hants Community Mental Health
Hants Community Hospital
89 Payzant Drive, Windsor

Mental Health Mobile Crisis Team*
The Mental Health Mobile Crisis Team provides crisis support for children, youth and adults experiencing a mental health crisis. It offers telephone crisis service 24/7 anywhere within the Capital Health District and mobile crisis response from 1 p.m. to 1 a.m. daily to Halifax, Dartmouth and Bedford. The Team includes mental health professionals and police officers who are designated to the crisis service. It offers confidential and non-judgmental mental health assessment and intervention as well as support and consultation to individuals, family and community members. 429-8167 or 1-800-429-8167

Connections Clubhouse*
Connections Clubhouse provides employment services, community outreach and housing, supported education and healthy lifestyles programs for adults living with long-standing mental illness. The Clubhouse is founded on the realization that recovery from mental illness must involve the whole person in a vibrant and culturally sensitive community. Connections offers respect, hope, and unlimited opportunity that opens the door to all the richness that the community has to offer, along with all the rights and responsibilities of active citizenship.
473-8692, or

New Beginnings Clubhouse*
New Beginnings is a place where people living with mental illness can be involved in work, social, recreation and community activities. Volunteer members of New Beginnings and staff work together to run the clubhouse. It supports people living with mental illness (its members) to regain self-worth, purpose and confidence.

Supportive Community Outreach Team (SCOT)
The teams provide service to individuals living in the community with a severe and persistent mental illness or concurrent mental illness and substance misuse. In most instances, mental illness or substance misuse has had a major impact on aspects of clients’ lives, such as housing, employment, social supports, finances, daily living skills. The Principles of Psychosocial Rehabilitation guide the teams’ work. These principles emphasize hope, recovery, empowerment, and effective rehabilitation.

Seniors Services (community and day program)
While many of the mental health needs of seniors can be met by family physicians, Mental Health Seniors Services supports people 65 years of age and older who are living with mental illness and physical challenges or disabilities. It also supports individuals with dementia who live with behavioural difficulties associated with mental illness. The service provides community-based assessment and time- limited treatment and follow-up to seniors in their homes (private home or long-term care facility). It also provides a day program for seniors living with depression, anxiety, loss, grief and other similar difficulties. 473-7799

Community Outreach Assessment and Support Team (COAST)
– Community-based component of the Dual Diagnosis Program (services for people living with mental illness and developmental disability)

The Community Outreach Assessment and Support Team provides services for people living in the community with mental illness and developmental disability. Their services include assessment, follow-up, crisis assessment and admission to hospital for acute treatment and stabilization. They also provide ongoing evaluation of individual care plans, nutrition counselling, support and information for families and care providers, and consultation with family physicians and other primary health care providers.
464-3032 or 464-3048

Nova Scotia Early Psychosis Program*
The Nova Scotia Early Psychosis Program (NSEPP) supports people between the ages of 15-35 who are experiencing a first episode of psychosis and their families. The program promotes early detection and provides quick and accessible assessment and treatment. It focuses on clinical services, education, research and advocacy. 473-2976, or

Mental Health Day Treatment Program
The Day Treatment Program is an intensive, six-week group therapy program for adults living with mental illness. Group sessions include stress and anger management, assertiveness training, goal setting, feelings, skills for change, recreation/physical activity, relaxation and leisure lifestyles. The program’s objectives are to support people to reduce symptoms, develop coping strategies, improve communication skills, better handle interpersonal relationships, change dysfunctional thinking and improve overall functioning.
473-2500 or 473-2503

Eating Disorders Clinic
The Eating Disorders Clinic helps people overcome anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa. The clinic offers a variety of treatment options through a series of groups that address concerns associated with eating disorders, including self-esteem and relationship issues.

Centre for Emotions & Health
Many physical ailments and complaints may be linked to mental more so than physical causes.The Centre for Emotions and Health focuses on the role of emotions and psychiatric disorders in physical health and illness.

Chronobiology & Sleep Disorders Program
The Sleep Disorders Program assesses and treats sleep disorders in adults. People supported through the Sleep Disorders Program live with disorders including insomnia, restless leg syndrome, obstructive sleep apnea and sleep disordered breathing.

Mood Disorders Program
Often collaborating with family physicians, the Mood Disorders Program provides consultation, assessment, group therapy and follow up for people living with mood disorders, especially bipolar disorder. The program also provides services for people at high risk of developing a mood disorder as a result of family history, and focuses on mood disorder research and education.

Reproductive Mental Health Services
Offered by the IWK Health Centre, Reproductive Mental Health Services supports women with mental health concerns that affect them during reproductive care, e.g., when pregnant, after birth, miscarriage or other traumatic event, including assault.

Provincial Sex Offender Assessment and Treatment Program*
The Provincial Sex Offender Assessment and Treatment Program provides assessment and treatment to people living in the community, the majority of whom have been convicted of an offence and are on parole or probation. The goal of the program is to make communities safer by minimizing the likelihood that people convicted of sex offences will commit repeat offences. Group programs are provided throughout Nova Scotia.

Emergency Psychiatric Assessment Services*
When a person goes to an emergency department in the Capital Health District and emergency staff determine the person needs an emergency psychiatric assessment, he will be referred to Emergency Psychiatric Assessment Services. These services provide psychiatric assessments on an emergency basis to adults and are located at the QEII emergency department and The Nova Scotia Hospital. Call 911 in an emergency or visit your local emergency department. For information (not for emergency service), call 464-3111 or 473-2043

Short-stay units
Short-stay units provide intense support for people experiencing a mental health crisis who would benefit from a short period in hospital. Typically people spend no more than five days in the short stay unit before moving on to another service (e.g., acute care) in the hospital or returning home. The short stay team focuses on ongoing assessment and working with the person to identify and access community-based resources, such as housing, food, peer support. The short stay units are located in the Abbie J. Lane building of the QEII and The Nova Scotia Hospital. People are most often referred through Emergency Psychiatric Assessment Services. 464-3291 (The Nova Scotia Hospital) 473-4771 (Abbie J. Lane)

Acute care units
The three acute care units – two at the Abbie J. Lane building of the QEII and the other at The Nova Scotia Hospital – provide support in-hospital to people who are in an acute phase of mental illness. Teams provide ongoing assessment and work with individuals and their families on treatment options, recovery goals, discharge planning and identifying and accessing community resources. The team’s goal is to provide treatment and support that will help the person reach a period of stabilization. 464-3323 (The Nova Scotia Hospital) 473-2548 (Abbie J. Lane)

Community-focused living unit
The community-focused living unit supports people who are in a period of stabilization but require support to live successfully in the community. That support may focus on building skills, identifying and accessing community resources or another mental health service, or identifying appropriate housing. The community-focused living unit is located at The Nova Scotia Hospital.
464-3336 or 464-3339

Rehabilitation Services
Maritime and Coral Halls, located in the Mount Hope building of the Nova Scotia Hospital, provide an intensive inpatient rehabilitation program for individuals with serious mental illness. The program utilizes the Recovery Principles in assisting clients to identify goals in the areas of living, working, education, self-care, social, leisure and treatment. The client has the opportunity to work with a team to assist them in developing an effective treatment and comprehensive discharge plan. The main goal of the program is to assist individuals to develop the skills required to live successful and meaningful lives in the community.

Seniors Services – Inpatient care
Acute inpatient treatment is an option when seniors’ mental health needs cannot be met through the community or day treatment program. The team of health care professionals on Willow Hall at The Nova Scotia Hospital provide assessment and a range of treatment options for people 65 years of age and older living with mental illness and physical conditions. They also support people living with dementia and behavioural difficulties associated with mental illness. The team works with individuals, families, family doctors and long- term care facilities.

Emerald Hall – Inpatient component of the Dual Diagnosis Program
Emerald Hall supports adults living with a mental illness and developmental disability who are not able to live in the community either because of a lack of available resources or a need for intense support that is only available in hospital. Many of Emerald Hall’s current clients are long-term residents. As such its occupancy is almost always 100 per cent. However, crisis admission is sometimes available to registered clients.

Forensic Mental Health Services
The Capital District Mental Health Program provides a number of mental health services to people who have had contact with the judicial system. Services include psychiatric assessment, treatment, rehabilitation programs, transition program and community- based support. People who are charged with an offence under the Criminal Code of Canada and whose mental health is in doubt may be sent by the court to the East Coast Forensic Hospital for a psychiatric assessment. The findings of the assessment, in addition to other resources, are used to determine if the individual is a) not criminally responsible, b) not criminally responsible and/or unfit, or c) criminally responsible. If a person is found to be not criminally responsible and/or unfit to stand trial, he/she will be admitted to the East Coast Forensic Hospital.