Nova Scotia

IWK cuts 18 mental health and addiction positions.

The IWK Health Center is cutting 18 positions in mental health and addiction services.

The IWK Health Centre is cutting 18 positions in mental health and addiction services.

Between 20 and 30 youth workers will lose their jobs at the end of this summer, depending on whether they work full or part time.

Thursday's announcement comes after the hospital handed out 22 layoff notices in March.

The hospital said it plans to fill eliminated positions with a mixture of social workers and licensed practical nurses.

Jocelyn Vine, the IWK's vice-president of patient care, said the hospital will increase its adolescents day patient numbers by 18 per cent.

Vine said the new cuts mean ten more children will be treated as outpatients a day.

"We anticipate that the programs that we have will continue to be very good. We will have an increased access to clinicians as a result of these changes. We will be increasing the number of day patient spaces," said Vine.

Now 16 beds, down from 20, will be preserved through the week for children and teens with severe mental health illnesses.

Those beds are reserved for children and teens who come to the city to receive long-term treatment.

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