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Protective factors as a path to better youth mental health

January 12, 2016

Moncton, NB (NBHC) - The New Brunswick Health Council (NBHC) is releasing a brief regarding the need to improve the state of youth mental health in the province.  It outlines the improvement of protective factors and the concept of resilience as a potential avenue to improve youth mental health.

"There are initiatives in the province that already recognize the need to improve the state of mental health.” says Stéphane Robichaud, CEO of the NBHC. “But, like we have observed about other areas of our health system, greater coordination is required, along with clear and common performance targets."

The brief includes the NBHC’ analysis on youth resilience by looking at 12 questions on protective factors from the 2012-2013 edition of the New Brunswick Student Wellness Survey for Grades 6 to 12, which could be used to spark discussions on this topic. When schools participate in the survey, we can produce information at the school or local level, which is used to support change in many communities.   

Protective factors that deserve particular attention include helping young people access all supportive services available and making sure children and youth get enough sleep, since only 29% of youth in New Brunswick get 8 hours of sleep or more per night (this number varies among communities from 15% to 54%). Resilience, or the ability to bounce back from adversity, is also in part the capacity of individuals to find the right supports, programs and services for their needs.

The brief and its supporting report titled Fostering Resilience in New Brunswick Schools and Community are available online at www.nbhc.ca.

The NBHC has been established as an independent organization that measures, monitors and evaluates New Brunswick’s health system performance through a citizen-centered dual mandate of performance measurement and citizen engagement. 

MEDIA CONTACTS

New Brunswick Health Council: Christine Paré, 506-869-6714, christine.pare@nbhc.ca