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Many people who experience problems with substance misuse, and/or gambling also experience other mental health problems which can include depression, anxiety, bi-polar disorder and schizophrenia amongst others. These issues can interact with each other in complex ways. Successfully dealing with two or more significant challenges may require specialized skills and resources. With that in mind, EACAS has partnered with numerous local mental health and community agencies to bring a variety of special programs to those experiencing concurrent disorders/ Dual diagnosis.

Concurrent disorders cause unique problems in diagnosing and treating. The symptoms of one problem can mask, mimic or exacerbate the symptoms of the other. For example, the depression and manic states of bipolar disorder may appear similar to the effects of alcohol abuse and vice versa. Our programmes include:
The symptoms and signs for a concurrent disorder are different from person to person, depending on the particular addiction and mental health issue.

EACAS Concurrent Disorders Program
Effective treatment for this population calls for a unified approach addressing the mental illness, the substance use/activity and their interconnectedness. The mandate of the Concurrent Disorders Program is to provide assessment, treatment, referral and aftercare to people with both a serious mental illness and an addiction.
The intention of the program is to provide clients with education on how their mental illness and substance use/addiction impact each other. We aim to provide skills training on changing your substance use/addiction and managing symptoms of mental illness. Our programs include:

Concurrent Disorder Group (Health & Hope I)
• It is a 10-week psycho-educational support group for people who are experiencing difficulties with both substance abuse and a diagnosed mental health issue.
• Groups are co-facilitated by a mental health worker and an addictions worker.

Concurrent Disorders Aftercare Group (Health & Hope II)
This is an ongoing support group for graduates of the Health & Hope 1 Group
Family Day Workshop (Concurrent Disorders/ Dual diagnosis)
A day-long workshop for significant others designed to provide education about concurrent disorders, recovery and the impact on the family. The workshop also helps individuals learn ways to better support their loved one while learning information on positive coping strategies for themselves.

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