As part of PHSA, we operate within the context of a larger mental health and substance use care system in which several organizations and stakeholders play key roles:
- Ministry of Health
- Ministry of Mental Health and Addiction
- Ministry of Child and Family Development
- Ministry of Public Safety and the Solicitor General
- B.C. Office of the Auditor General
- Regional health authorities
- Criminal justice system
- Community partners and agencies
- WorkSafe BC
- Patients, clients and families
Working with PHSA, BC Mental Health and Substance Use Services supports these provincial health care goals as defined by the Ministry of Health:
- Support the health and well-being of British Columbians
- Deliver a system of responsive and effective health care services across B.C.
- Ensure funding is managed effectively
In support of these goals, and in alignment with the PHSA, BC Mental Health and Substance Use Services has seven directional priorities for 2022/2023:
- Quality improvement
- Client experience
- Patient partnership
- Cultural responsiveness and safety
- Engage Indigenous patients, families and communities
- Evaluation, learning and literacy
- Recruitment and retention
- Professional development
- Care for people
- Staff capacity
4. Advance a culture of learning, innovating and sharing knowledge
- Academic and Indigenous partnerships and teaching
- Continuous learning
- Improve access to meaningful information about BCMHSUS
- Learning with communities with lived experience
Improve academic partnerships and affiliations and expand opportunities for student internships, practicum placements, fellowships and other initiatives.
- Access of care through virtual health
- Crisis line enhancement
- Clinical System Transformation (CST)
- Service continuum
- Health literacy
- Provide strategic leadership to strengthen the provincial mental health and substance use system of care
For more information on the strategic direction and priorities of BC Mental Health and Substance Use Services, download and read the refreshed BCMHSUS 2022-2023 directional plan (PDF).
Previous direction plans: BCMHSUS 2019-2022 directional plan (PDF).
Our strategic priorities and directions are directly related to our place in the provincial continuum of care for British Columbians with mental health or substance use concerns. This continuum includes various levels, or tiers, of care for people according to their needs. Most people need only lower-tier services available through their regional health authorities. These might include consultations with family doctors and specialists, counselling, psychology, and residential treatment for mental health and substance use issues.
A lesser number of people need higher-tier, specialized services because they suffer from more complex and severe mental health and substance use concerns. Their needs go beyond what the local health authorities offer.
Our strategic priorities and direction serve these clients and patients, who need the most specialized services available.
This diagram helps illustrate our place on the continuum:
To learn more about our systems work in B.C., including the care continuum, visit
Leading the Response to the B.C. Auditor General.