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HSN's harm reduction philosophy

Together, through a philosophy of Harm Reduction, HSN is working with all levels of the organization to ensure staff and physicians have the required training and education to support patients with substance use issues while they are in hospital or receiving treatment in any of our outpatient services. 


Harm Reduction Survey: We’re listening

Improving access to mental health and addictions care for patients is one of the key goals of Health Sciences North’s (HSN) Strategic Plan. When it comes to providing care for people who use substances, HSN is committed to ensuring we are providing and designing services informed by patient experience and by evidence-based protocols.

Equally important is how we provide this care. How we support individuals, whether they are actively using substances, struggling to refrain from using, or recently relapsed and in withdrawal, has a lasting impact on their care experience and the future success of their treatment while in hospital and beyond. 

The Mental Health and Addictions Program recently sent out a needs assessment survey to gain insight and feedback on this issue. The survey was completed by staff, patients and their loved ones, as well as community partners regarding their current level of knowledge on substance use, our service gaps, and to help identify what staff need to feel comfortable supporting individuals with substance use who come to us for care.

Feedback collected will be used to provide specialized training on substance use, harm reduction, appropriate language use, anti-stigma, and overall how to support individuals who use substances while they are admitted to the hospital or receiving outpatient services at HSN.