Confronting The Madness

Ep. 18 Dr. David Goldbloom on Urgent Innovations to Improve Mental Health Access & Care

September 7, 2021

In the episode, I had the pleasure of speaking with one of my favorite people, Dr. David Goldbloom.  David has been a leading mental health advocate long before it was en vogue. 

He is a leading psychiatrist and an Officer of the Order of Canada. He maintains an active clinical and teaching role as a Psychiatrist and Senior Medical Advisor at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) in Toronto – Canada's largest mental health teaching hospital and one of the world's leading research centres.  David is also a Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Toronto.

In 2007, he was appointed Vice-Chair of the Board of the Mental Health Commission of Canada; he subsequently served as Chair from 2012-2015.

He has authored numerous scientific articles and book chapters and has provided talks and lectures to student, professional and public audiences. He is the co-author of the 2017 best-selling book “How Can I Help? A Week In My Life As a Psychiatrist”.

David and I spent the bulk of our conversation discussing his most recent book “We Can Do Better: Urgent Innovations to Improve Mental Health Access and Care.”

I have been personally involved in Alberta helping launch some of the innovations discussed.  Many of the challenges that I experienced while attempting to encourage these innovations related to significant institutional barriers: bureaucratic stagnation; political indifference; a fragmented array of historical program and services; and, legacy funding programs that no longer meet the needs of health systems, service providers, or, most importantly: the patient.

I agree with David:  We can do better, much better, and that many of the innovations discussed in this episode have promise to Improve Mental Health Access and Care.

In order to unleash these innovations at scale, we require more flexible governmental support, which includes agile funding programs. We also require bold leadership: individuals within and outside the “system”, committed to collaborating fulsomely while also challenging the legacy system that is currently in place.

We can all agree: the status quo will no longer suffice.


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