Random stabbing by mentally ill man leads to innovations in dealing with complex patients (Dr. Bill MacEwan)

A new report responding to a 2012 review of Metro Vancouver’s emergency and health care services shows notable decreases in violent offences, street disorder and negative police interactions — including a 49 per cent decrease in arrests made under the Mental Health Act — among the mentally challenged and addicted.

According to Vancouver Coastal Health and Providence Health Care, efforts taken since the 2012 review was ordered have significantly improved communication between various service providers, and the quality of care received by mentally ill and substance-use patients.

“I think there’s always room to improve and implement new things and that’s exactly what we want to try and do here,” said Dr. Bill MacEwan, head of Psychiatry at St. Paul’s Hospital.

Stephanie Ip reports

Click here to read more