A mental health crisis is potentially being experienced when there is a rapid onset or change (last 2-4 weeks) of mental health symptoms, resulting in the youth being unable to participate in their daily activities or relationships. A mental health crisis does not necessarily require attending the hospital emergency department. Children and teens in crisis often can be effectively supported in the community.

Call START before visiting your hospital’s emergency department (unless immediate medical attention is required).

OUR SERVICES may include:

• An in-person mental health and safety assessment within 24-48 hours if appropriate

• Brief treatment that could include individual therapy, group sessions and/or further assessment by a psychiatrist

• Family support

• Referral and transition to longer-term community services as required

The START Team provides in-community assessments (e.g. school or doctor’s office). Our central contact number (1-844-START11) will connect you with the START Team that serves the area where you live.

Address / Contact Info


Phone Numbers

Toll-free : 1-844-782-7811

Hours of Operation

Regular hours: 9am - 9pm, Monday to Friday
12pm - 9pm, Weekends and Holidays

Service Details

Cost structure: MSP
Referral criteria: 1. Child or youth is 6-18 years of age
2. Acute mental health crisis presentation
Age ranges served: child 0-12, youth 13-19
Accepting new patients / clients: Accepting new clients
Languages spoken: English

This program was last updated on 19 Sep 2016.

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