Nova Scotia Operational Stress Injury Clinic
The Nova Scotia Operational Stress Injury (NS OSI) clinic is a specialized outpatient mental health program that is designed to meet the unique needs of persons living with Operational Stress Injuries (OSI). An OSI is any persistent psychological difficulty resulting from operational duties performed during military or RCMP service. It may include a range of health problems such as anxiety disorders, depressive disorders, sleep difficulties, substance use and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) as well as other conditions that may be less severe, but still interfere with daily functioning.
The NS OSI clinic provides assessment, treatment, prevention and support to serving Canadian forces members, Veterans and RCMP members and former members. Treatment options at the clinic are on an outpatient basis only and include one-on-one therapy sessions and group sessions to address anxiety, insomnia, anger and other issues that are occurring as a result of an operational stress injury. Services are also available for client's support persons (e.g., family members).
Our clinic team includes psychologists, psychiatrists, social workers, nurses, a research and statistical officer, a program secretary and a manager. The team works within a model of collaborative interprofessional care, which means that a client may have more than one professional involved throughout their assessment and treatment process. In fact, most clients will see a number of clinicians of the OSI clinic team during their care. Decisions regarding treatment are made collaboratively with the client and the team, who consult on a regular basis. The multidisciplinary approach to care creates opportunities for clients to receive more than one type of treatment (for example, individual and couples therapy) at the same time. This ensures that care is both comprehensive and individualized for each client's specific needs. In order to ensure quality of service, the OSI clinic is a teaching and research centre. To this end, clients are asked to fill out questionnaires before and during their treatment, which helps the clinicians ensure that treatment is effective. The information collected is placed anonymously in a larger database and used to help the clinic decide which treatments are most effective, and any areas there may be for improvement of services. We also encourage and support learners in our clinic, which may be students, new clinicians, or researchers. At times, clients will be asked whether or not they are comfortable having a learner be part of their care. This is always optional and will be discussed with the client beforehand.
To receive services at the clinic, Canadian Forces Veterans, still serving members and RCMP members require a referral. Veterans can discuss a referral with their VAC case manager. People without case managers may call 1-866-522-2122 (English) or 1-866-522-2022 (French) to inquire about their eligibility. Those who are still serving can contact their Base Medical Officer. RCMP can speak with someone in Health Care Services for a referral.
Veterans Affairs Canada Assistance Service:
www.vac-acc-gc-ca or 1-800-268-7708
Peer Support for Operational Stress Injuries:
Operational Stress Social Support (OSISS) Program
www.osiss.ca or 1-800-883-6094
Monday to Friday, 8:30 am to 4:30 pm
NS Operational Stress Injury Clinic
Suite 210, 100 Eileen Stubbs Avenue
Dartmouth, NS B3B 1Y6
Tel: 902-460-6225 or toll-free at 1-844-403-7963