Saturday, November 21, 2009

Costs of Recovery

Wendy Stueck has written an excellent and compelling report in today's Globe about the Burnaby Centre for Mental health and Addictions.

She argues persuasively that the Centre is doing some truly good work in helping some hard case people to get clean and sober.

I admire their efforts and cheer them on.

But there is a small catch.

The cost per bed per annum at this facility is in excess of $125, 000.

Critics of treatment often charge that treatment is too expensive.

My first response is I am happy to pay whatever it takes to do this difficult and necessary work.

But I add this.

The Behavioural Health Foundation in Manitoba is doing exactly the same work with better demonstrable results for $50,000 per bed per annum.

BHF is the oldest and leading Therapeutic Community in Canada.

Other TC's in Canada operate on similarly smaller budgets than the Burnaby Centre.

They are able to do this because they use so many recovering addicts as staff.

Praise the Burnaby Centre, but note that less can be more.

No comments: