Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (CAP) Inpatient Mental Health

As part of our CAP Service, we provide short-term, acute care to children and adolescents (under the age of 18) experiencing acute symptoms of serious mental illness and cannot manage in the community.

The care environment is designed specifically for children and adolescents. Care includes; psychiatric assessment, stabilization, treatment, and transition planning utilizing a bio-psycho-social-spiritual approach. 

Admission is on the recommendation of a psychiatrist or by their designate. Upon admission, we will review mutual expectations and policies related to our commitment to; health and safety, medication and medical needs, cell phone usage, visitors, and treatment planning.

The focus during hospitalization is on:

  • Acute mental health care assessment
  • Stabilization and treatment for medically stable, high-risk children and adolescents
  • Medication and treatment review
  • Collaboration with community partners

Care is provided by a multi-disciplinary team including nurses, social workers,  psychiatrists, medical residents, teachers, transition workers (Algoma Family Services), and students in the health profession. 

What To Expect

Your Care

The multidisciplinary and multiagency team on CAP is focused on providing you with a compassionate, inclusive, and supportive environment. You will meet many CAP team members, and they will work with you to meet your individual needs.

We recognize that our patients and families bring a unique set of strengths, goals, knowledge, and opportunities with them. Once we know how you would like to direct your recovery, we will be able to offer you the tools that will guide you towards reaching your goals.

We understand that it can be overwhelming, and that is why we are committed to working with you every step of the way. 

Family & Friends

It is often beneficial to share our care plan information with those closest to us that we trust. You may find that the information they have is also a key to your care plan.

It is up to you to give consent to share these details.  If there is someone in your life that you want to include but would benefit from some coaching, our staff may be able to offer you support on how to manage that conversation. 

There are many opportunities to include those close to you and your care team.  These can include; team meetings, case conferences, discharge plans, and Complex Case Conferences.  These meetings are a way to ensure that you and your family are well linked with supports in the community to guide you in your recovery. 

Your Day On CAP

While you are a patient on the CAP unit, you can expect to follow a structured day decided upon by you and your treatment team.  You will have your meals on the CAP unit.

There is an expectation, similar to a school day, where you will start your day by getting yourself showered and dressed, tidying your room, and recognizing your goals and possible challenges for the day.  It is important to identify these challenges each day so that staff can help you to prepare yourself to work through them.

You will have groups/activities that will include learning new skills to help you reach your identified goals and spend time with staff to work on your assessments and treatment planning.

In the activity room, you may play musical instruments, do arts and crafts, or work on an exercise program in the gym. 

You may have in-person or virtual visits with your care team.

A teacher is onsite following the school year from Monday to Friday 1:00 PM – 3:00 PM.

Additional Information

Child and Adolescent Mental Health - FAQs

The hospital operates under the Health Care Consent Act.  This Act states that a capable patient of any age can consent (agree) to treatment.  The consent of their parent or guardian is not necessary.  The Health Care team decides whether a patient is capable.

Your child is capable of making a treatment decision if they can:

  • Understand the information relevant to the treatment decision
  • Understand the possible consequences of taking the treatment decision
  • Tell us their decision

If the team finds your child incapable of making a specific treatment decision, then someone else (usually a parent/guardian) will be assigned to make the decision.  This person is called a Substitute Decision Maker – SDM).

Every patient and family need is different.  We identify the needs and at times work with patients and families on the inpatient unit to help to assess, coach and monitor responses to the skills we are teaching.

As much as possible we attempt to have caregivers participate in regular therapeutic meetings with staff and the Child/Adolescent. 

There are many reasons under the Mental Health Act that warrants a person to be held in the hospital.  Some forms allow for some time for a Psychiatrist to do an assessment of a patient, and other forms may require a patient to be held in hospital involuntarily in order to allow for further assessment and determination/trial of treatment options.  The crisis and CAP staff are well versed in Mental Health Act and would welcome you to ask any questions that you may have. 

11:30 AM – 1:30 PM and 4:30 PM – 7:30 PM

Must be 18 years of age or older.  We encourage all visitors to be focused on the visit and so prefer that all electronics, including cell phones, be turned off/put away. 

Visiting guidelines and hours are subject to change due to direction from leadership or in line with the unique needs of a client’s care plan. If there is a high acuity on the unit we may ask that you shorten the visit and return at another time.