Ottawa, ON (March 25, 2020) More than 100 psychologists from every province and two territories in Canada have signed on to an initiative of the Canadian Psychological Association (CPA) to provide psychological services, via tele-health, to health care providers working at the front lines of the COVID-19 crisis. Psychologists have agreed to respond to requests for services within 24 hours and at no charge.
This unprecedented public health emergency is having a significant impact on the mental health of Canadians, none more so than those who are working on the front lines of health care. Canadians with COVID-19 depend on the expertise of health care providers. The health and well-being of those providers are critical to them being able to deliver this expertise. This is why the CPA called on registered psychology practitioners to consider donating some of their time to provide psychological services to front line health care providers who may be feeling stressed, overwhelmed or distressed by being on the front lines of this health crisis. Dozens have answered the call.
Psychological help is available from psychologists in good standing, registered in the province or territory from which they provide service and to where the service is received. Front line health care workers can receive these services and are invited to visit the CPA’s website:
There, they will find a list of the practitioners in their province or territory who are available to deliver one-on-one telepsychological services. Psychologists will connect with everyone who reaches out within 24 hours to set up these sessions.
We have all heard that one of the critical factors in responding to COVID-19 is to flatten the curve of transmission so fewer people get sick, fewer people get sick quickly, our health care systems don’t get overwhelmed and health providers don’t get sick themselves.
Says CPA President, Dr. Ian Nicholson, ““There is a tremendous burden on our health care providers to care for those who become sick, particularly those who become very sick. They face a high volume of patients, some of whom they fear they may not be able to successfully help because of the limits on our supplies – human resources, personal protective and other medical equipment.”
CPA CEO, Dr. Karen Cohen adds that “This burden takes its toll on the mental health of health care providers, and Canadian psychologists stand ready to help them, as they help the people of Canada manage the COVID-19 epidemic.”