The Quebec government announced Sunday it will be making a recurring investment of $35 million into the province's first psychotherapy program.

Quebec's Health Minister Gaétan Barrette said that the province's mental health sector was "insufficiently developed."

The new program will cover the services of psychologists for people suffering from mental health issues.

Treatments for anxiety and depression would also be covered by the program.

The new approach is to provide assistance to people who are in between front-line counselling and hospitalization.

Inspired by the U.K.

According to Barrette, the new approach is inspired by the United Kingdom's public health system.

He added that staff would receive "the necessary resources and training" to deliver the new services.

In line with the British example, the Couillard government is committing to providing the necessary resources to provide adequate services to three per cent of the population — the percentage in need of such assistance.

Barrette said that's about 240,000 Quebecers.

It will still take some time before the changes are implemented.

"The program will not be in place tomorrow morning," Barrette admitted.

The Order of Psychologists of Quebec, as well as the Coalition for Access to Psychotherapy, say they are pleased with the announcement.

With files from La Presse Canadienne, Radio-Canada