Urban Health

Urban Health: Addressing Physical & Mental Health

Life on the street makes overcoming mental illness almost insurmountable. Homeless people often won’t go to traditional hospitals and don’t have the support to see that they take their medication. Poor access to care and lack of social assistance only compounds the issue. That’s why the Mission has implemented urban health services to treat mental and physical illness in homeless people.

Projet de reaffiliation en itinérance et santé mentale (PRISM-Cogeco)

Since its launch in 2013, PRISM-Cogeco has served as an innovative model in the field of homelessness and mental health care. In the fall of 2015, the CHUM Hospital published an article highlighting its success, stating that in less than two years, 103 participants out of 140 left homelessness behind in less than six weeks.

– At a Glance:

  • 18 beds for men at our Webster Pavilion
  • 10 beds for women at our Patricia Mackenzie Pavilion
  • Six-week intensive program
  • Psychiatric, medical and psychosocial support
  • Three nutritious meals a day
Dr. Lison Gagné accompanies James, one of PRISM's first participants and success stories.
Dr. Lison Gagné, CHUM Psychiatrist, accompanies James, one of PRISM-Cogeco’s first participants and success stories.

Suivi intensif en itinérance (SII) Program

A new multidisciplinary team of professionals overseen by the CHUM works on-site at the Mission to provide close follow-up to over 50 people in the community who are homeless or at risk of becoming so, and suffering from severe mental illness. A Mission counsellor is an integral part of this team, adding hands-on knowledge of Montreal’s homeless community, as well as best practices.

Soon, we hope to add another Mission counsellor to this program, as well as beds to ensure closer follow-up.

Read Daniel’s story to learn more about the SII program.

Walk-in Medical Clinic

Since the opening of our clinic in partnership with the CHUM Hospital and CSSS Jeanne-Mance a little over a year ago, 282 homeless men and women received medical attention for various health problems that would have otherwise been left untreated. Located just steps away from Café Mission, the clinic is open weekdays from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Marie Guétie
Marie Guétie, Nurse Clinician, CHUM, at her desk at the Old Brewery Mission’s Walk-in Medical Clinic

PASS Program: Successfully Treating Hepatitis C

Successfully treating homeless people infected with hepatitis C is now possible, thanks to our PASS program in partnership with the CHUM. Also, homeless patients treated at the CHUM for illnesses requiring close monitoring and rest are systematically transferred to the Mission. Since May 2014, at least 85 patients were admitted into the program, which is housed on-site at our Webster Pavilion. 

– At a Glance:

  • 14 beds for men at our Webster Pavilion
  • Intensive medical treatment that can last up to 12 months
  • A doctor and a nurse from the CHUM, two Mission counsellors
  • Therapeutic activities, such as art and cooking workshops
  • Psychosocial support and counselling
  • Three nutritious meals a day
  • $450 Perseverance Grants awarded to patients who complete the program—thanks to GILEAD and ABBVIE

Maison Claude-Laramée

Dedicated to preventing homelessness among men and women living with severe mental illness, Maison Claude-Laramée is the first of its kind in Quebec. This innovative residential nine-bed program is run in conjunction with the Douglas Mental Health Institute at a convivial apartment building in Verdun.

Leveraging both organizations’ area of expertise, the program combines the clinical attention by the Douglas staff and day-to-day counselling by Old Brewery Mission counsellors. This stable, supportive and home-like environment permits many of the clients to return to a more normal life integrated into their community.

To support the Old brewery Mission’s urban health initiatives like PRISM and Walk-in Medical Clinic, please consider making a donation.